Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Recipe: Zucchini Lasagna (Vegan, Gluten-Free, Oil-Free, Tomato-Free)

This lasagna doesn't contain any meat, dairy cheese, wheat noodles, olive oil, or tomato sauce. I know that doesn't sound like lasagna anymore, but there's spinach! Omnivores put spinach in their lasagna, right? No, not usually? Oh well, I used a lasagna technique to make it, so I'm sticking with the name.

I'm half Italian. So I (used to) know good tomato sauce. I still miss it, and didn't really want to make a fake tomato sauce from beets and carrots. I've made it before and it's not very satisfying - at least not when tomato sauce is a main ingredient like in pasta. All the recipes I found for a lasagna without tomato sauce were loaded with cheese. I didn't want a heavy, rich lasagna like that. So I came up with this alternative - light but filling, and full of delicious veggies!

The zucchini I used is actually from a friend's garden. And it was HUGE! I should have taken a picture before I cut it, but I forgot. You can see by the size of the noodles I got how big it was. I didn't even use half of the zucchini for this.

The main components of this lasagna are:
  • Zucchini cut into wide, thin noodles
  • Lightly steamed spinach (about 5oz, fresh)
  • Tofu Ricotta by Oh She Glows (I omitted celery, oil, and red pepper flakes)
  • Roasted red peppers (2 peppers, roughly chopped)
  • Artichoke (1 can, roughly chopped)
  • Vegan mozzarella (I changed the flavors a bit for Smoked Coconut Gouda by Vedged Out)
I started out by slicing the zucchini into wide, thin strips and setting them in a colander in the sink. I sprinkled some salt on top and let it sit for a while to release some of its moisture.

To assemble the lasagna:
  1. Place a layer of zucchini noodles in the dish and cover with a bit less than half of the steamed spinach.

  2. Spread half of the tofu ricotta on top, and add half of the roasted red peppers and artichoke.

  3. Add another layer of zucchini noodles and most of the spinach that's left. Cover with the rest of the tofu ricotta, roasted red peppers, and artichoke.

  4. Add the final layer of zucchini noodles and the rest of the spinach. Top with grated vegan mozzarella cheese.

  5. Bake at 400°F for 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

Steve rated this lasagna a 9.2/10! He loved it, and he's not a huge zucchini fan. I loved it too, and will definitely make this again to use up all the zucchini we have.