My courgette adventure continues today with something tasty for all carnivorous foodsters out there.
Replacing pasta sheets with thinly sliced courgettes is a great way to lower the calories of the dish and it also brings you a step closer to having your 5 a day without too much thinking. Great for veg-unfriendly kiddies too! they will be none the wiser of how much goodness you’ve fed them!
Lets go then:
There are 3 parts to making a lasagna. Don’t get scared now, it actually takes longer to write than to make!
First start by prepping the “sheets”:
3 courgettes, sliced thinly. The easiest way to do this without chopping your fingers off is to halve the courgette to two more manageable pieces, then take a thin slice off one side leinghtways. Turning it on the board cut side down, gives you an even, steady surface, allowing you to get a better grip while slicing the rest.
For the Ragu:
500g mince of your choice
2 spring onions
1 Spanish (yellow) onion
1 large beet tomato, as ripe as you can find it
the finely chopped courgette ends
1/2 glass of white wine
Olive oil, salt, black pepper, dried thyme
Cube the carrots and onions finely. Cut the tomato in 4 and grate. Discard the skin.
In a deep pot heat a good splash of olive oil and add the onions and carrots.Saute gently for 5 minutes and add the mince. Season, mix well and poor in the white wine. Reduce to half and add the grated tomato pulp. Finally add the chopped courgette and give everything a good mix. Turn down the heat to low, cover with a lid and cook ’till all the juices have evaporated, stirring from time to time. When ready, take off the heat and set aside to cool down
For the Bechamel:
I’m lazy today so using a shop-bought-mix-in-the-bag kind. It saves time greatly as you just add milk to the powder and voila, a minute stirring you have a bowlful. Throw in a handful of grated cheddar for a little added yum and season with freshly cracked black pepper.
Now that you have everything ready, lets assemble the dish. Cover the bottom of a deep baking tray or an ovenproof dish with a layer of courgettes. Add a layer of Ragu over them and then a layer of Bechamel.Repeat again and sprinkle with grated cheddar on top.
Put in the oven (don’t preheat) and set it to 150C/Gas 3. Keep an eye on it and when it starts bubbling and the cheese turns golden in color, turn the oven off and let the lasagna sit for half an hour till the oven cools. This will allow the courgette layers to steam and soften even more and the flavors to combine further. The perfect colorful lunch for a summer’s day