Sicilian Vegetarian Lasagna

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There are so many layers of flavor in this lasagna that even meat lovers will enjoy this dish. I like to use veggies that are in season or look the best at the market for each of my layers.  There is plenty of room to play with the types of vegetables and cheese in this recipe to create lasagna that best suits your taste.  Victoria Gourmet’s Sicilian Vegetarian Lasagna calls for:

  • ·         1 package of lasagna noodles
  • ·         1- 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
  • ·         1- 14 oz. can of petite diced tomatoes
  • ·         5 Tbsp. Sicilian seasoning
  • ·         8 oz. package of fresh baby spinach
  • ·         16 oz. ricotta cheese
  • ·         3 sweet bell peppers (red, yellow or orange)
  • ·         8 oz.  shredded asiago cheese
  • ·         3 cups sliced zucchini
  • ·         1 cup chopped basil  
  • ·         8 oz. shredded mozzarella
  • ·         4 oz.  shredded parmesan
  • ·         2 Tbsp. Olive Oil

Preheat Oven to 350° The lasagna noodles that I use are Barilla no bake lasagna noodles. Start the lasagna by putting down one layer of noodles in the bottom of a 13X9 inch pan with edges 3 to 4 inches high.  I used a disposable tin foil pan for this dish which makes it easy to transport, store and clean up. There are 3 veggie layers in this recipe

  • ·         Spinach and ricotta as a base
  • ·         Bell peppers and asiago in the middle
  • ·         Zucchini, Basil and Mozzarella on the top

While the bottom two layers are almost always the same I often switch up the third to showcase seasonal vegetables.  Recommended substitutions are broccoli, asparagus or green beans.  If you are using asparagus or green beans you will want to par boil them prior to adding them to the lasagna to make sure they are tender. Start the bottom layer by roughly chopping the baby spinach.  Mix the spinach and ricotta in a bowl and then evenly spread over the noodles in the pan.  After each layer of vegetables and cheese sprinkle 1 Tbsp. of Sicilian seasoning over the top.  The final two Tbsp. of seasoning will be used in the red sauce.   Lay down another layer of Lasagna noodles. Dice the peppers and place them over the 2nd layer of noodles.  Cover the peppers with the asiago cheese. Sprinkle the Sicilian seasoning on top of the cheese and lay down another layer of lasagna noodles.   Chop the zucchini into quarter inch slices and chop the basil.  Mix the zucchini and basil together and then spread the mixture over the noodles.  Sprinkle the Mozzarella on top followed by 1 Tbsp. Sicilian seasoning.  Mix together crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes and remaining Sicilian seasoning in a large bowl with a generous drizzle of olive oil.  Place the final layer of noodles in the pan.  Spread just enough red sauce over the noodles to completely coat them and reserve the remaining sauce for serving with the finished lasagna.  Place the uncovered pan in the pre-heated oven for 40 minutes.  Remove the lasagna from the oven and sprinkle the parmesan cheese over the top.  Place the Lasagna back in the oven for 20 more minutes.  Remove the lasagna from the oven and let it rest for 10 minutes before serving.  Spoon the remaining red sauce over each slice of lasagna and serve. Best,             Victoria

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