Zucchini Lasagna – Grain-Free!

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lasagna

I’ve been really going strong lately with my grain-free mission. No, I am not trying to eat low-carb or paleo necessarily but I just feel like I need to give my body a break from the everyday grind of grain. Heh heh, get it?

I always feel really great when I cut out grains but alas, it just cannot be done all of the time seeing as I…well…I like grains!

Also, it is zucchini season? Are you guys feeling it too? “Gaaahhhhh What do I do with all of this zucchini!?!?”

zucc

Well, I’ll tell ya:

1. You can give it away.

2. You can pickle it or make zucchini bread.

3. You can make my grain-free zucchini lasagna!

I vote for number 3, naturally.

And number 2. You can never have too many fermented foods! Am I right?

But right now, we’ll focus on number 3.

You will need.

-a large baking dish or casserole dish.

- A rather large zucchini or about 5 small zucchini’s (enough to do two layers in your baking dish)

-1 to 1 1/2 lbs. of ground meat. I used elk that I had in the freezer from dear ol’ dad but grass-fed beef or ground turkey would be delicious as well.

- sauce. I used a bottled pasta sauce from Trader Joe’s. You’ll need about 28 oz, or one lb. of sauce. Try to find an organic one if you can’t make it yourself! To spice my bottled sauce up I added lots of fresh basil, balsamic vinegar, chili powder, oregano, pepper, garlic, and salt.

- 15 oz. of Ricotta. If you can’t do Ricotta substitute for Cottage Cheese.

- Generous amount of provolone, parmesan, or asiago. (I had cheddar so I used cheddar and parmesan)

-one onion, red or white.

-basil, oregano, cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper to taste.

Ok, so now that we have all of our ingredients we can address the layers.

It will look like this, starting from the bottom: zucchini layer, meat sauce, ricotta, cheese, zucchini, meat sauce, ricotta, cheese. Yum.

If you have time, start your  meat sauce about 2 hours ahead of time so that the meat, onions and spices can all simmer together. If you’re short on time, don’t worry about the 2 hr simmering time.

1. Brown meat with 1 T of each spice. Sea salt to your liking.

2. Start simmering your sauce with any spices you’d like to ‘spice it up’ with.

3. Brown onions until tender.

4. Add meat and onions to simmering sauce. Simmer away.

5. Slice your zucchini so as to have long slabs of it. Do it about 1/4 of an inch thick. I think mine varied from 1/4 to 1/2 an inch thick.

6. Lay down your first layer of zucchini in the bottom of your baking dish.

zucclayer

7. Spread the meat sauce on top of the zucchini in a somewhat thin layer.

8. Spread a layer of ricotta on top of the meat sauce. Be sure to save enough for another layer of ricotta!

9. Layer your cheese of choice on top of the ricotta.

10. Repeat layers once again starting with zucchini. Your cheese will be the last layer!

11. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 45-50 mins.

12. Remove foil and place under broiler for 60 seconds to melt and brown the top.

13. Let cool for 10-15 minutes.

Enjoy!

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