No-Pasta Personal Lasagna

No-Pasta Personal Lasagnas
Pairing with CAST’s Merlot, Windsor Oaks, Chalk Hill, 2019
Love lasagna, but trying to eat healthier? Me too….When tasting this newly-released Merlot, with its  lush and rich palate, its liveliness, great acidity  and balance of tannins, fruit and earth tones – comfort food came to mind. Particularly we were thinking about casseroles. We were also in the mood for a good in-house date night meal, and these personal lasagnas using roasted zucchini instead of pasta was a great way to enjoy healthier eating, a beautiful wine and lovely company.
Raise a glass, and enjoy! Cheers…Chef Joe.

No-Pasta Personal Lasagna

Ingredients (makes 2)

For the zucchini

  • 2 pounds firm, unblemished zucchini  (6 small or 4 medium)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • ½  teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

For assembling the lasagna

  • 2 tablespoon soften butter for baking pan
  • ½ cup bread crumbs, preferably sourdough
  • 3.5 cups tomato sauce (your favorite jared or home made)
  • 2 cups grated parmigiano–reggiano or grana padano
  • ½ cup whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 2  cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions

Rinse and dry the zucchini, slice-off the stem and trim the blossom end. With a sharp long bladed knife (or a mandolin if you have one) cut very thin lengthwise slices, about an 1/8-inch thick. Put them in a large bowl, sprinkle over the 1/2 teaspoon of salt and the 2 tablespoons of oil and toss to coat the slices with the seasonings. Arrange a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees. Place the slices of zucchini on baking sheets and  roast for 10-12 minutes or until the side touching the pan is browning.

Assembling the Lasagnas:

For the personal size servings it is best to use a 4”x 6” baking /serving dish. Spread 2 TBSP  of the tomato sauce in a thin layer in the bottom of the pan.

Cover the bottom with pinches of the bread crumbs. Trim the slices of zucchini and cut them in pieces so they fit close together and lie flat (but you don’t have to fill every small crack or hole).

Spoon  a good size dollop of ricotta onto the layer of zucchini and spread it around a bit. Sprinkle some parmesan.

On top of that another 2 TBSP of sauce , more bread crumbs on top of that.

Make a layer of zucchini , using three of the slices. You can lay them crosswise or lengthwise in the pan, whichever way fits best. Overlap the slices as necessary to make an even layer that completely covers the sauce. Press down gently to condense the lasagna and make more room in the pan. Now repeat the layering (there may only be about three layers.) Arrange another layer of  sauce followed by bread crumbs and trimmed pieces.

Cover the bread crumbs with 2 more spoons full of sauce, spread evenly. Lay out the rest of the zucchini slices in an overlapping layer. Spread the remaining tomato sauce in a thin layer. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese in a generous layer over the top of the lasagna.

Baking the Lasagna:

Bake the lasagna uncovered for about10 plus minutes, giving the cheese time to brown a bit on top and the lasagna time to heat through. Remove the pan from the oven and carefully Let the casserole settle for a few minutes before serving (it will stay hot for some time).

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