|Well, hello there!|
Sean requested that I make veggie lasagna this week. The last time I made it was on New Year's Day and it turned out really good. I had a lot on my mind today so cooking really helped me forget it for a bit.
Lasagna is one of those dishes like soup or an omelet; you can use pretty much anything. At least in my world. This time I used:
- 1 zucchini, diced
- 5 large button mushrooms, sliced and diced
- 1/4 onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, diced fine
- 1/2 package of spinach, chopped
- 3 carrots, chopped
- 1 can Del Monte spaghetti sauce (we like it and it is around 80¢ for a large can)
- 1/2 a bunch fresh broccoli, sliced
- 1 cup cottage cheese
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese
- salt, pepper and parsley to taste and for color
- 9-12 uncooked lasagna noodles
First I sauteed the mushrooms in a little cooking spray. Just let them mellow out on medium to medium high for about 8 minutes, stir as needed. Don't add seasoning, especially salt, until the mushrooms are golden brown and no liquid is coming out of them. I then added the onion and garlic and turned it down to low or slightly higher. You want the onions to become translucent but you don't want the garlic to burn. I let them cook for about 5 minutes before adding the zucchini, broccoli and spinach. I just let them cook on low for about 4 minutes. I wanted the green veggies crisp but still slightly cooked
While the veggies cooked I opened the spaghetti sauce and poured it in a blender and then added the chopped, uncooked carrots. I blended till the carrots totally disappeared. For some reason my kids do not like cooked carrots but I wanted them to have the vitamins and the bulk of carrots. I also mixed the cottage cheese, 1 cup mozzarella cheese and parsley together at this time. If it the finished product looks too dry I sometimes add 1 cup of water around the pan.
To assemble spray and large pan with cooking spray and put about 1/4 cup of the sauce on the bottom. Lay down 3-4 lasagna noodles and top some cheese mixture and more sauce. Repeat this for 2-3 layers making sure you make the top be noodles, sauce and the remaining cup of mozzarella cheese. Cover tightly with foil that you have coated with cooking spray. Cook at 350-375º for 45 minutes. Uncover and cook an additional 15-20 minutes. The main thing is you want to make sure the noodles are cooked but that the top layers of noodles are not crisp and hard. When the noodles are cooked take it out of the over and let rest for 10-15 minutes so it cools and the flavors meld more.
I threw some Pillsbury biscuits in the oven at the end of cooking for cheap "garlic bread".
Everyone liked it but the girls didn't eat as much as I would have liked. I don't think they liked the spinach. I also served them each a big piece. Next lasagna I want to make is a Mexican one.