Wednesday, January 19, 2011
This Looks Yummy
From time to time, my friends share really fantastic recipes that always taste delicious and that are, sometimes, even healthy. My friend, Alissa, recently sent me this recipe for Zucchini Lasagna. You may have guessed that the zucchini is used in place of the pasta, so your carb load is significantly reduced and you are adding an ingredient that is good for you!
Did you know that zucchinis are very low in calories and contain no saturated fats or cholesterol? They are a source of folates, a very good source of potassium (which means good for your heart, and they are good sources of Vitamins C, A and B-Complex.
The most important thing about this recipe, however, is that it TASTES good. And the leftovers are even better! It's a wonderful dinner idea when you have company over. You can also freeze individual servings and heat them up for lunch or a last-minute meal.
1 lb ground Italian sausage
1 lb ground beef (or buffalo, elk, deer…)
1 medium onion chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic minced
1 – 14 oz can of tomato sauce
1 – 14 oz can of diced or crushed tomatoes (partially drained)
4-6 medium mushrooms sliced (optional)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon sugar or honey (optional)
Spices (choose your own preferred flavors):
-2 tablespoons fresh Italian Parsley finely chopped
-1 tablespoons fresh oregano chopped (or 1.5 tsp dried)
-2 teaspoons fresh basil chopped (or 1 tsp dried)
-1 teaspoon fresh thyme chopped (or 1/2 tsp dried)
-1/2 teaspoon dried fennel seed (optional)
1.5 – 2 lbs of zucchini squash (sliced and peeled nets about 1-1.5 lbs total)
1/4 cup of grated parmesan (romano or parmigiana reggiano)
16 ounces whole milk ricotta cheese
16 ounces low moisture mozzarella grated
Brown Italian sausage and ground meat on medium to medium high heat. Drain if needed. To the meat mixture add diced onions and allow to soften for 5 minutes. Add in garlic, stir for 30 seconds. Incorporate tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, mushrooms, salt, and Italian seasonings with meat. Reduce heat and allow to simmer stirring occasionally for about 15 minutes.
Slice zucchini into thin horizontal sheets similar to lasagna pasta. Lay out and pat dry on paper towels. Set aside.
Combine ricotta cheese, grated Parmesan and eggs in a bowl until mixed well. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Check meat sauce for flavoring, adjust if necessary (adding sugar to reduce acidity per taste preference). Once the meat sauce liquid has reduced remove from heat and line up all ingredients to assemble the lasagna.
In a 13×9 glass baking dish combine a third of each ingredient in layers as follows:
Repeat two more times.
Bake for 45 minutes or until bubbly throughout and cheese is dark golden brown. Rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
Why don't you try it and tell me what you think?