I’m in love with zucchini pasta. I’ve been making spaghetti-style noodles for months, and the other day I decided it was time to branch out and make something different: lasagna. I took inspiration from this recipe here. I had to meatify it, though (ie. add some beef), and instead of vegan cheese I opted for organic mozzarella (something I rarely indulge in!).
I won’t lie and say it’s a piece of cake to prepare, but once you break it down into its various components it doesn’t seem as daunting.
You’re lookin’ at 6 layers, piled in this order:
1) Tomato sauce
2) Zucchini noodles
4) Grassfed ground beef + mushrooms (in the original recipe, butternut squash is used)
5) Organic ricotta cheese, or the faux ricotta I’ll share here (found in the original recipe)
6) Organic mozzarella
First, get the tomato sauce simmering in a pot.
Ingredients: Dollop of coconut oil, 2 medium diced onions, 5-6 cups chopped tomato, 6 or more cloves crushed garlic, optional mixed herbs, salt n pepper to taste, optional hot pepper flakes or (gasp!) splash of red wine
Directions: Heat some coconut oil in a pot. Add onions and saute until soft. Add tomatoes and simmer for at least 20 minutes, until most of the liquid has simmered off. Add remaining ingredients in the last 5-10 minutes of cooking.
While the tomato sauce is simmering, brown some ground beef in another pan. I added some chopped mushrooms to the beef because, well, beef and mushrooms are awesome together.
As your sauce is simmering and your beef is cooking, you can do the following:
-Preheat oven to 400°
-Make zucchini noodles (A mandolin is very helpful here. Slice them lengthwise, making them the typical long flat shape of lasagna noodles.)
-Make faux ricotta
Ingredients: 1 cup raw cashews (soaked anywhere from 1 hour to overnight), ½ cup raw pine nuts (I substituted walnuts), 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice, zest from one lemon, 6 tbsp nutritional yeast, ½ tsp salt, ½ tsp black pepper, 2 cloves garlic, ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk (you could probably just use water), 2-3 tbsp mixed herbs (basil, thyme, parsley, etc)
Directions: Combine all ingredients together in a food processor. Add more liquid as you need, and continue to process until you have soft texture of ricotta. Do a taste test and add more salt, pepper, etc as needed.
Once you have all of your components put together, it’s time to layer ’em up! It’s truly exciting.
Layer them in your dish in the order I mentioned above: tomato sauce, zucchini, spinach, beef, ricotta, mozzarella. The layers won’t be perfect and they’ll likely get mixed up together a bit. But it makes no difference in your mouth – this lasagna was absolutely delicious, and gave us plenty of leftovers which seemed to get more and more delicious with time.
Bake in the oven for 35-45 minutes, until a knife inserted in the middle comes out hot. Try and hold your horses and let it cool a little bit before diving in. Enjoy fully!
If you make this, do share a pic or tell me about it! I’d love to hear from you.
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