{45 by 45} zucchini lasagna with a hearty lamb ragu

well my intention was to make eggplant lasagna but after 3 stores i couldn't find any eggplant.. so i had to change it to zucchini.. and while it tasted yummy there will be no pictures of the finished product as it looked horrible ha.. it would have looked so much better with egg plant.. also this weekend i got a present!! i got a  Nikon D3000.. I was so excited... so be looking for a photography page popping up because i am going to see about taking a course.. yay i am so excited..

lamb ragu (my first recipe accomplished off my 45 by 45 list)

prep time: 45 minutes
cooking time: 2 1/2 hours

olive oil
2 carrot, finely chopped (i used my mini food processor)
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 lb ground lamb
1/4 cup of red wine
1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes with it's juice
2 tblsp. tomato paste
1 cup chicken broth
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper

in a heavy bottom skillet heat oil up (2 turns around the pan), add carrots and onion and cook over medium heat stirring occasionally until soft and just beginning to brown about 12 minutes.  using a slotted spoon remove veggies to a plate and set aside.  2 more turns around the pan with olive oil add lamb and cook until brown and crumbly.. add red white and simmer until most is evaporated, scraping up all the tasty bits from the bottom add tomatoes, tomato paste, chicken broth, bay leaf, salt and pepper.  reduce heat to low/simmer and cover and cook for 2 1/2 hours.. check on it occasionally and stir..

zucchini lasagna

prep time: 10 minutes
cooking time: 1 hour

3 large zucchini ( i recommend using eggplant instead)
1 tblsp. salt
2 eggs
1 large container of ricotta
2 tblsp. of chopped fresh parsley
2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese

preheat oven to 350 (f).  slice zucchini lengthwise into thin slices (i used my mandolin) sprinkle slices with salt and set aside to drain in colander or on a rack over a cook sheet.  (you would use the rack and cookie sheet if doing eggplant).. in a medium bowl mix egg, ricotta and parsley together until well combined.  shred cheese..  now assemble your lasagna.. spread some meat sauce on the bottom of a 9x13 casserole dish.. later zucchini slices, ricotta, mozzarella,  and then meat sauce and keep doing that until your out of ingredients.. cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes.. remove foil and raise temp. to 375 (f) and bake an additional 15 minutes.. let stand for about 5 minutes and serve.. with the zucchini it didn't hold the shape of a traditional lasagna but i think it would with eggplant.. now if you want to use lasagna noodles then you can cook them according to package and layer them before the zucchini or eliminate the zucchini all together or a for a helpful tip don't cook your noodles.. layer them uncooked (they are easier to work with) then once it's all layered pour water around the edges until it just about to the top of your last layer.. it will cook the noodles but will evaporate.. so you don't have runny lasagna..


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