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Thursday, April 30, 2015

ZUCCHINI LASAGNA










Normally zucchini lasagna tends to be water-logged thanks to the enormous amount of water given off by the zucchini.  This is a fail-safe method to make this main course without those problems and without going to any extraordinary lengths to pre-cook the zucchini and dry it off, etc.  The coconut flour is very absorbent of moisture and that was one of the secrets.  The other was pouring off the juice from the tomatoes and putting them on top of the casserole instead of with the meat, however, if I were to make it again, I would blend the tomatoes with ¼ cup of the tomato juice drained off and add to the meat to make the more traditional lasagna meat sauce.  That would work perfectly, and I’m typing it up that way, however, the way I did it was rather pretty and eye-catching with the tomato on top instead.

11/2  lbs lean ground beef (0.680 kg)
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (411 g mL)
2 tsp basil (10 mL)
11/2  tsp salt (5 mL)
1/2  tsp black pepper (2 mL)
11/ cups Ricotta cheese (375 mL)

1 egg, fork beaten
21/2  lbs zucchini (1.1 kg)
2 tbsp coconut flour, divided* (30 mL)
 (NB - use Bob's Red Mill coconut flour)
2 cups grated Mozzarella cheese (500 mL)
1/cup grated Parmesan cheese (60 mL)

In large skillet, brown beef; pour off excess fat. Drain tomatoes and keep 1/4  cup (60 mL) of the liquid and add to blender along with diced tomatoes; blend. Add tomato sauce, basil, salt and black pepper to ground beef.  Cook briefly until the liquid reduces.

Slice zucchini lengthwise into 1/4–inch (0.6 cm) thick slices.

In small bowl, combine Ricotta cheese and egg. 

Arrange half zucchini in bottom of 13 x 9-inch (4 L) pan and sprinkle with half coconut flour. Top with half Ricotta cheese mixture, half meat sauce and other half Ricotta cheese mixture.  Repeat zucchini, remaining coconut flour, and meat sauce layers. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over top. Top that with 11/2 cups (375 mL) Mozzarella.  Bake in 375°F (190°C) oven 40 minutes.  Top with remaining Mozzarella and bake another 20 minutes.

Helpful Hints:  Costco or Price Smart have these really cute small zucchini already packaged.  I think they give off less liquid than the larger ones.  However, this method will still work with regular-sized zucchini.  There will be a bit more liquid, but nothing serious, as this zucchini lasagna was perfect...not much liquid at all. *Coconut flour tends to catch my tummy.  Oat flour would work instead.  Just use a little less ... maybe 1 to two teaspoons per layer.  That should be negligible with regard to carbs.

Yield:  6 very large servings
1 serving
494.7 calories
39.5 g protein
31.3 g fat
4.2 g fiber
9.9 g net carbs 



For other great Low-Carb, Gluten-Free recipes by the team & me:

Support your team, buy Low-Carbing Among Friends cookbooks at: 

http://amongfriends.us/Jen.php (Paypal/Amazon) - SALE priced!  Volume 4 is FREE with a purchase!


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