Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Zucchini Lasagna

N: I'm gonna make a lasagna using zucchini and no pasta!
B: That sounds weird. Is there going to be meat in it?
N: Yes.
B: Hmm, ok. As long as it has meat, this has potential then...
Inspired by recipe from Chow, but it was overly complicated so I have greatly simplified it (ie no need to bake zucchini twice, sautee mushrooms in one pan, then sautee artichokes in another pan separately... who's got time for that!? Not this medical student!)

The sauce is definitely worth making though, and this recipe actually makes a little extra (it's a double batch of the original recipe) for later use.

When I baked it there was extra liquid, but once I drained it, it was fine (and after I refrigerated it and ate it as leftover, the held its shape nicely). Next time, I might use tomato paste instead of crushed tomatoes for presentation, but I thought the consistency was perfectly fine eatingwise

Ingredients
Sauce:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 (28 oz-ounce) can crushed tomato (tomato sauce is too watery)
1 can artichoke hearts, chopped
1 1/2 cups mushrooms, finely chopped
basil
red pepper flakes, pepper, Italian seasoning, kosher salt, to taste
3/4 lb ground beef

Assembly:
16 oz ricotta cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
3 zucchini, ends trimmed and sliced lengthwise 1/4 inch thick

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 

Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, and sautee for a few minutese until beginning to brown. Add the garlic and spices and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the can of crushed tomatoes, stir to combine, and bring to a boil. Stir and simmer until the sauce has slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat. 

Cook the ground beef on stovetop with salt and pepper until just browned. Add meat to the sauce

Slice zucchini lengthwise into very thin slices. 

To assemble lasagna, layer 1/2 the zucchini slices, 1/2 the ricotta mixture, 1/2 the mozzarella, then add meat sauce. Repeat layering with remaining zucchini slices, ricotta, mozzarella and meat sauce. Spread mozerella evenly over the top

Bake for 45 minutes.

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