I have never been a really big fan of lasagna. Don't get me wrong, lasagna has a lot of really yummy flavors, but I honestly don't think I've ever ordered it at a restaurant. I wanted to experiment though to see if I could make a primal version of lasagna... As I was walking through the store, I saw some ricotta made from grass fed cow milk, so I picked that up... I also had some leftover goat's milk mozzarella that I wanted to use up, so I decided that now was as good a time as ever to use it, so here goes nothin!
* 3 zucchinis
* 2 cans diced tomatoes
* 1 onion, diced
* 6 cloves garlic
* 3 portobella mushroom caps
* 1 lb ground beef
* 1 lb spicy Italian sausage
* 1 cup shredded mozzarella (optional)
* 8 oz ricotta cheese
* 1 tbs dried oregano
* 1/2 tbs dried basil
* 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
First, I browned up the beef and the sausage in a pan with some olive oil. It didn't take long to cook through, but I just wanted it browned and in nice little crumbles. In the meantime, I diced up the onion. After the meat was cooked, I removed it to a plate.
I threw the onions in the pan and let them soften up... heaven forbid there are crunchy onions in Curt's food!
I let the onions cook while I chopped up the portobello mushrooms. Typically, I wouldn't chop them up so small, however, Curt doesn't like mushrooms... soooooo... I just chopped them up really really small so that the chances of him finding them were slim to none.
I tossed the mushrooms in the pan and let them soften up too.
While the mushrooms and onions were cooking, I set to cutting up the zucchini. I decided to use zucchini instead of pasta noodles because 1) grains are terrible for you and 2) I happen to love zucchini. This would have been easier if I had a mandolin slicer, but I haven't gotten around to buying one yet. Instead, I just took a long time to really slice the zucchini thinly.
This took a while, but it was definitely a good replacement for noodles! Here, you can see how thin the strips were.
Once the mushrooms and onions were cooked nicely, I added the meat back into the pan and let it all warm through. Then, I added in both cans of tomatoes and the dried herbs. I stirred everything together and let it all simmer until it smelled like a delicious meaty pasta sauce!
While the meat sauce was heating through, I took some time shredding the cheese. If you don't do dairy, then you can always leave this part out and I'm sure it would still be delicious. I had some leftover cheese that I wanted to use up, though, so I shredded it up and added it in. I'm not a milk girl, but I do occasionally like cheese (with wine!!!) and I always use half and half in my coffee... but back to the food!
I mixed the shredded mozzarella with the ricotta and also (even though I didn't write it in the ingredients) I added in a few shakes of dried parsley. I mixed it all together and set it aside.
Once the meat sauce was cooked and once the cheese mixture was mixed and once the zucchini "noodles" were sliced, I was ready to assemble!
First, I put a layer of the meat sauce on the bottom of the pan.
Then, I set layered on the zucchini. Then topped it with the ricotta cheese mixture. Then, another layer of the zucchini.
I had saved a bit of the shredded mozzarella so I topped the lasagna with the cheese and popped it in the oven at 350 for 1 hour. About half way through, I put a bit of aluminum foil on top so that the mozzarella wouldn't burn.