No Noodle Vegetable Lasagna

Hi Mati,

I am back! I think I say that almost every post now, but it does feel like I leave for a long while and then come back.

Weather must be getting really nice by you, as here it is starting to get really hot since we barely had any winter this year. We have been enjoying going to the beach and the pool and spending as much time outdoors as possible because once it is summer, it is so hot and humid that we stay indoors.

Feeding the child has been a challenge as for some weird reason he does not really like to eat much, but his parents truly enjoy food and live to eat.

I have been a bit busy in the kitchen lately trying to experiment with a few things here and there and I finally got around to taking pictures of some of my creations.  This week, a colleague shared a no noodle lasagna recipe with me. For those of you on a diet, this is a great way to continue enjoying certain foods and for those of us who celebrate Passover and have a difficult time figuring what to eat, this is your dish!
It is a very simple dish to prepare in which roasted vegetable strips replace the noodles and the best part of it all is that you can experiment and add as many veggies as you want. I used eggplants and zucchini and I wish that I would have had some Kalamata olives at home to add. If I do this again I would add so many variations, so here is my modified recipe.

Ingredients

Cooking spray for the Pyrex
2 medium eggplants sliced lengthwise into thin pieces
2 large uncooked zucchini sliced lengthwise into thin pieces
1 large egg
¾ pound part-skim ricotta cheese
¼ cup basil (fresh or dry)
¼ cup of parsley or cilantro (or both)
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 ¼ cups of marinara sauce
½ pound shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
½ cup of pitted kalamata olives
Any other vegetable of choice

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. You first need to roast the vegetables so that they soften up. Coat two baking sheets with cooking spray. Place eggplant on one prepared baking sheet and place zucchini on other prepared baking sheet; coat vegetables with cooking spray.
  3. Roast for 8 minutes and turn over the vegetables and roast for 7 to 10 minutes more (do not roast the vegetables for more than 20 minutes); remove from oven and set aside.
  4. In the meantime, in a medium bowl, combine the egg, ricotta cheese, basil, Kalamata olives, cilantro/parsley, and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.
  5. When the vegetables are done, reduce oven temperature to 350°F.
  6. To assemble lasagna, coat bottom and sides of a 14- X 8-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  7. Spread a thin layer of sauce (1/4 to 1/3 cup) on the bottom of pan. Layer eggplant over sauce, and you can mix in some zucchini or you can layer separately.  Cover the vegetables with half of marinara sauce and then spread half of ricotta mixture on top; sprinkle with half of mozzarella cheese. Top mozzarella cheese with the rest of the eggplant and zucchini and cover  with remaining marinara sauce; spread with remaining ricotta mixture and then sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese.
  8. Any other vegetable that you add you can add in between the layers.
  9. Bake until the bottom starts to bubble, about 30 to 35 minutes. Remove lasagna from oven and allow it to rest for about 15 to 20 minutes before slicing into 12 pieces.
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