I have released four recipe books so far:

The Best of the Sunny Raw Kitchen
The Best of Raw Freedom Community
Delightfully Raw and
Deliciously Raw

These feature some of the most delectable creations to have come out of my raw kitchen and will appeal to anyone interested in a healthier diet, regardless of their level of knowledge and experience. From easy one-step everyday fare to more elaborate and involved gourmet dishes and layered cakes, they offer something for everyone and every occasion. Incredibly tasty smoothies, creamy and comforting warm soups, sexy salads, delicious nut cheezes, satisfying entrees and scrumptious guilt-free desserts...

Healthy food never tasted so good!

To learn more about my recipe books, click here!

Friday, January 12, 2007

Luscious Lasagna

A lasagna is one of those recipes that looks pretty complicated but, trust me, is much easier than it seems. All it is, really, is several simple recipes combined into one. If you'd rather not do it all in one go, feel free to prepare some of the individual recipes a day ahead. The assembled result, however, is much greater than the sum of its parts, and is certain to thrill your taste buds!

Precisely because of the different recipes that make it up, a lasagna just begs for improvisation! There are countless possibilities to play with, so don't be shy to experiment. I don't think I've ever followed one particular lasagna recipe from beginning to end. I just like to look at several and come up with my own. The following Luscious Lasagna is my latest (and most delicious!) version. It was inspired by the creations of Nomi Shannon, Sarma Melngailis and Alissa Cohen.



Luscious Lasagna
Serves 4

All measurements are approximate so feel free to tweak to your liking!

Zucchini noodles
2 med. zucchinis
2 tbs olive oil
2 tbs Braggs or Nama Shoyu
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano

Trim both ends of the zucchinis and cut on a mandolin into wide, paper-thin slices. Dip into the marinade then set aside on a plate. As you keep working, you'll notice some of the excess marinade will gather at the bottom of the plate so just drain it back into the marinade bowl.

Almond Ricotta
(This recipe was inspired by Fairygirl, a gifted raw chef on the Raw Food Talk forum.)

1 cup almonds, soaked overnight
1 garlic clove
1/2 tsp sea salt
Lemon juice, to taste
Water

Combine everything in a food processor and process until smooth. Add water until you reach a ricotta cheese consistency. Set aside.

Cheesy Nut Cream
1/2 cup macadamia nuts, soaked
1/2 cup cashews, soaked
2 tbs pine nuts, soaked
2 tsp nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp salt
Lemon juice, to taste
1/2 cup water

Soak nuts for a couple of hours. Blend all ingredients until smooth. Refrigerate to help thicken.

Spinach Cream Layer
3 cups fresh spinach
3 fresh basil leaves or 1 tsp dried
4 tbs Almond Ricotta or Cheesy Nut Cream (I've tried both and the results are equally delicious!)

Pulse chop spinach and basil in food processor until finely minced. Fold into Ricotta or Cheesy Nut Cream and combine well. Set aside.

Tomato Sauce
1 cup sun dried tomatoes, soaked
2 or 3 med. tomatoes
2 tbs olive oil
2 pitted dates, soaked for a couple of hours
1 tsp salt
1 clove garlic or more, to taste
Fresh or dried herbs, to taste

Drain sun dried tomatoes well. Blend everything together until smooth. You may add a little soak water to reach a smooth consistency, but remember that you want the sauce to be fairly thick. Adjust seasonings. Set aside.

Marinated Portobello Mushrooms
1 Portobello mushroom
2 tbs Braggs or Nama Shoyu
2 tbs olive oil
1 tsp dried tarragon

Chop Portobello mushroom and let marinate for a few minutes. Drain and set aside.

Assembling the Lasagna:
- Line the bottom of a glass lasagna pan with a layer of zucchini slices, each one slightly overlapping another. (Mine filled about 3/4 of a 7 x 11 pan, which was perfect as it allowed me to tip it slightly and scoop out the excess liquid before popping the lasagna in the dehydrator.)

- Spread some Almond Ricotta, followed by a layer of Tomato Sauce.

- Add a layer of zucchini slices. Then the Spinach Cream Layer.

-One more zucchini layer, followed by some Cheesy Nut Cream and topped with Tomato Sauce.

-More zucchini slices. Then another layer of Almond Ricotta.

-A final layer of zucchini, topped with Tomato Sauce.

Let sit for a few minutes on the counter while the dehydrator is warming up.

Scoop out excess liquid and dehydrated for 2 to 3 hours at 105-110 degrees. This will allow some of the moisture to evaporate.

Cut into individual servings, and top with a nice big dollop of Cheesy Nut Cream and a few Portobello mushrooms.

Notes:
- Some people like to serve lasagna cold, but I prefer to eat it slightly warm, out of the dehydrator.

- If you have left over sauce or cheese that's fine. It would make a wonderful pizza or topping for zucchini angel hair pasta.

- You could substitute (or add!) a layer of pesto, marinated veggies or tomato slices. Your imagination is the limit!

Enjoy!


4 comments:

  1. sounds and looks great! can't wait to try it. thanks for sharing.

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  2. Wow, this is a definite must-try! I did not even follow all your instructions, as I am usually scatterbrained, but it was delicious and very filling. Thanks for sharing, you do have a great gift!

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  3. I made this for my husband for our valentines dinner last night. What a treat! We both loved it.

    Although the recipe is a lot of steps I actually enjoyed the process. As I made each of the individual recipes that compose the lasagna I learned a lot....for instance the almond ricotta was fantastic and would go so well other recipes......the creamed spinach would make a great side dish or even stand alone lunch......can't wait to make "spaghetti" and pizza with the tomato sauce :o)

    Just discovered your site last week and I am really enjoying it, thanks for sharing with all of us. Newbies like me need the experience you can share. Also, thanks for having the recipes organized so well. I have your recipe index bookmarked as a favorite now!

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