This summer is brutal. Every afternoon this week I baked like a hamburger patty on the sidewalk. When the rain finally poured down Thursday night and dropped the mercury, I was able to turn on the oven to use some of the zucchini overflowing on our counter.
I am not a huge fan of Americano lasagna. Too much beef, too much cheese, too much pasta–I generally feel like I have a gigantic brick in my stomach if I eat any of it. This recipe takes out the pasta and a lot of the cheese, so it won’t taste anything like “lasagna,” but it was so tasty that I didn’t even have time to take a cross-section picture… because it was gone before I got home!
Zucchini Beef Lasagna
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup chopped onions
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb ground beef
1 cup grated carrots
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tbs chopped basil
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground pepper
1 cup tomato puree
1 1/2 cup chopped and peeled fresh plum tomatoes
2 medium zucchinis
1 cup grated cheddar
1 cup grated parmesan
1 cup extra tomato or pasta sauce
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, after sauce has cooked. Use 13×9 glass casserole dish.
1) Heat olive oil in a large saucepan. Add onion and garlic, cook til tender. Add beef and saute till browned all over.
2) Add the grated carrot, thyme, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper. Stir and pour in the tomato puree and chopped tomatoes. Simmer on medium heat 20-30 minutes until the mixture has juiced into more of a sauce. Preheat oven.
3) Slice zucchini into long, thin strips. Cover bottom of glass pan with thin layer of extra tomato sauce and a small scoop of meat sauce. Add layer of zucchini, pour half the meat sauce onto layer and spread. Add half the cheese and spread. Repeat: zucchini, meat sauce, cheese. Make sure all zucchini is covered.
4) Bake for 45 minutes until cheese starts to brown. Remove from oven and serve immediately. Freezes well!