SOURCE: Mrs. T's Pierogies

March 29, 2010 08:00 ET

Liven Up the Lenten Season

MISSION, KS--(Marketwire - March 29, 2010) -  (Family Features) This Lenten season, meat won't be missed at the dinner table with Layered Eggplant Parmesan Casserole. This take on the classic Italian favorite, combines breaded eggplant slices, zesty marinara sauce, melted mozzarella cheese and layers of pierogies -- the perfect pairing of pasta and potatoes -- all in one deep dish. This meal's great flavor is surpassed only by its convenience, requiring less than ten ingredients and prepared in less than an hour. And if your family is craving a meatier meal, add a pound of crumbled, cooked sausage to the marinara sauce.

Layered Eggplant Parmesan Casserole
Serves 6

1 medium eggplant
2 large eggs
1/2 cup seasoned Italian bread crumbs
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 24-ounce jar tomato-basil marinara sauce
1 16-ounce box Mrs. T's potato and cheddar pierogies
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

Preheat oven to 350° F.

Cut eggplant into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Beat eggs in bowl. Place bread crumbs in separate bowl. Dip eggplant slices in eggs to coat; dip into bread crumbs to coat well on both sides.

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat; add eggplant slices and cook until lightly browned on both sides. Repeat with remaining eggplant slices and olive oil.

Grease a 2 1/2-quart baking dish. Spoon 1/3 of marinara sauce on bottom of dish. Arrange half of frozen pierogies on sauce. Top with half of eggplant slices, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and half of remaining sauce. Repeat with remaining ingredients, finishing with sauce and mozzarella cheese. Bake 30 minutes or until mixture is hot and bubbly.

Optional: Add one pound crumbled, cooked sausage meat to marinara sauce.