Monday, August 20, 2012

Squash & Mushroom Lasagna

With gardens producing a gluttony of zucchini and summer squash, here's a delicious way to use it!

Italian Squash and Mushroom Lasagna reminds me of what Garfield used to say,  "Once again I'm saved by the miracle of...lasagne!"
Living a low-carb lifestyle, I often wish for a bowl of angel hair pasta or a portion of lasagna with wide noodles.  As a child I detested squash, but it has become a favorite food now.  I often enjoy zucchini or summer squash in place of pasta.  Also, for veggie only eaters, I'd use portobello mushrooms instead of meat.  

I've made lasagna with grilled zucchini slices, but actually prefer my squash mashed, leaving a little texture.  You'll need a 24 ounce jar of pasta sauce, plus Parmesan, and mozzarella cheeses.  Make the meat sauce, cook and mash veggies, and make the cheese filling.  Assembly requires only a few minutes before baking.

Italian Squash and Mushrooms Lasagna

Meat Sauce:
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 pound mild Italian sausage
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 16 ounces pasta sauce (I use a 24 oz. jar Prego Traditional style sauce)
Cook meat and seasonings with onion until it's no longer pink.  Drain well and add pasta sauce and mushrooms.  Cover and simmer on low heat while you prepare the other layers.

Squash Filling:
  • 4 small zucchini squash, diced
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Cook squash and onion in salted water until tender.  Drain well and smash with a potato masher.  Add Parmesan cheese.  

Cheese Filling:
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups cottage or ricotta cheese
  • 2 teaspoons parsley
  • 2 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese
Beat eggs slightly and fold in cottage cheese, parsley and Parmesan cheese.

To Assemble:
Spoon meat sauce into a 9x13" baking pan.  Spread the squash filling over the sauce.  Sprinkle with 1 cup of mozzarella cheese.  Then top with the cheese filling.  Cover with remaining cup of pasta sauce and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.  

Remove from oven and let it sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Hoping you enjoy some gooey garden goodness...

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Dilly Dip

What a fun, hot summer!  After people to see and places to go, I'm back with lots to share.

I said HOT right? Boise's been in the 90s and 100s all summer long.  Usually it starts to cool in the middle of August, but not yet!  We've been keeping meals easy and cool.

Fresh, crunchy vegetables and tangy, cool, creamy dill dip is a savory snack, or nice served along-side grilled chicken or sandwiches.

Greek yogurt adds protein, lowering fat and dill pickles give it zing.  Try serving it with sweet mini-peppers.  They are colorful and surprisingly delicious.

Dilly Dip
  • 1/2 Cup Mayonnaise (I like Best Food's Olive Oil Mayo)
  • 1/2 Cup Greek yogurt
  • 3 minced dill pickles
  • 1 Tbsp Dill Weed
  • 1 Tsp Seasoned Salt
  • 1 Tsp Chopped Onion Flakes
  • 1 Tsp Parsley
This recipe is easily made with a food processor or blender.  Add all ingredients to processor bowl or blender and pulse until smooth. Chilled in the fridge for 1-2 hours. Serve with fresh veggies, pretzels, chips, or chunks of soft bread. 

Thanks for stopping...stay cool!