Thursday, January 28, 2016

Rick’s Vegetable Lasagna

I wanted to make lasagna, but I was trying to limit my consumption of meat. I remembered I used to eat an eggplant and zucchini bake that I bought from Schwann’s. It was very similar to lasagna with mozzarella, parmesan cheese, and a tomato sauce. I have issues with wheat and wanted not to use pasta, so the idea was to replace them with thinly sliced zucchini and summer/yellow squash. I also thought that I should replace the meat with sautéed mushrooms. 


On September 20, 2015 I began my experiment. I used a lasagna recipe from the cookbook the Frugal Gourmet Cooks Italian s a blueprint. I made a few mistakes in making this dish. The first mistake was I used a pre-made marinara sauce. It turns out it had way too much corn syrup in it. Since then, I make my own marinara. The second mistake was not blanching the zucchini and yellow squash. The third mistake was using yellow squash at all. Its seeds are too big to slice into noodle thickness. The fourth mistake was I layered it too high. The final mistake was not waiting for it to cool before plating.

The zucchini had not cooked long enough to be easy to bite through or cut. It was very soupy in consistency. Originally I had thought of doing it Florentine style, meaning adding spinach. With making spanakopita that same month, I decided to remove the spinach element. It had mozzarella, ricotta, zucchini, summer/yellow squash, marinara, and mushrooms. The flavor was spot on.

Next time I will blanch the zucchini for 2 minutes. Hopefully next time I will be able to use a mandoline to slice the zucchini. I used a peeler this time. I will use fewer layers. I will make my own marinara sauce, which I did in October when I made pizza. I also used the marinara with zucchini noodles. I made the zucchini noodles using the Veggetti device. It turns vegetable into pasta shapes. Overall it was a cool experiment. I did not expect to get it right the first time. 

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