Manicotti, which means “cuff” in Italian, are idea for filling with cheesy ricotta. Slices of eggplant mimic this pasta-free way to enjoy the same flavors you’ll find in the original recipe. Adding kale to the filling boosts nutrition, lowers calories and fat. If you want to prepare this in the warm summer months, inside of heating the oven, bake on preheated grill. Close the lid and cook 10 to 15 minutes, until the cheese is golden and bubbly.
- 1 cup crushed canned tomatoes
- 1 small Italian eggplant, about 3/4 pound, trimmed, sliced lengthwise into 4, 1/2-inch slices
- Non-stick cooking spray
- 1 cup chopped kale
- 1 cup part skim ricotta
- 1 egg
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup grated mozzarella
- 4 sprigs of basil, leaves torn
- Spread the crushed tomatoes inside an 8X8 oven safe dish, and set aside. Preheat an oven or toaster oven to 350°F.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Pull the skillet off the heat and coat with cooking spray. Add the slices and cook 2 to 3 minutes per side until the slices start to brown. Reduce the heat to low and cover cook 2 to 3 minutes more, or until the slices are tender. Remove the lid and cool slightly while you prepare the filing.
- Place the kale, ricotta, egg, and black pepper in a large bowl. Mix with a rubber spatula until the kale is well incorporated. Place 1/4 cup of the ricotta mixture in the center of each slice of the eggplant, fold over and place them seam side down in the baking dish on top of the tomato sauce. Sprinkle the mozzarella over top and bake 35 to 40 minutes or until the cheese is melted and brown. Sprinkle with the basil leaves and serve immediately.
Nutritional Stats Per Serving (Serving size: 1 cup): 224 calories, 18 g protein, 12 g carbohydrates, 11g fat (6 g saturated), 80 mg cholesterol, 3g fiber, 408 mg sodium
Weight Watchers® Points Plus: 6
Do you follow a gluten-free diet? Check out these hidden sources of gluten.