It’s no secret that I like to cook. Cooking is one of my favorite creative outlets (and creating dirty dishes is lots of fun too). Sounds funny I know…what’s creative about chopping vegetables night after night? Well sometimes, when I’m feeling extra sassy,… I decide to SHRED vegetables in my food processor instead. Ta dah!
I’m telling you, I’m super creative.
Some afternoons I find myself inspired to create a new spin on an old dish, as I did today. I decided I wanted to make lasagna. I have no idea why because we never eat lasagna. But in my mind I saw visions of pesto and shredded zucchini and decided Kula Baby needed a nap so I could get cooking.
Hiding vegetables is not something I’ve always thought was important. I remember thinking years ago (BEFORE having a child): “Why the hell are parents HIDING VEGETABLES–kids should learn to LOVE vegetables because they are goooood stuff.”
Yes I realize the naive arrogance one can project before having kids. I get it, I get it. I’m all for hiding as many vegetables as possible now, hence the SECRET spinach pesto in this lasagna. Enjoy!
Super Secret Pesto Lasagna
- 4 small to medium zucchini, shredded in food processor
- 1 small sweet onion, finely diced or shredded
- 1½ cup of secret spinach pesto (recipe below)
- ½ pound (or more if you like lots of meat) of cooked ground organic turkey
- 1 package of rice lasagna noodles, uncooked
- 1½-2 cup (s) mozzarella cheese --again, choose the amount of cheese you like.
- 1 cup parmesan cheese
- ½ cup feta cheese
- ½ cup of pine nuts
- ¼ teaspoon dried basil
- Salt and pepper
- ½ cup pine nuts
- ¾ cup parmesan cheese
- 2 cups packed fresh spinach leaves
- 1 cup packed basil leaves
- 1 clove of fresh garlic, chopped
- juice of a lemon
- ½ cup (ish) olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- Shred zucchini in a food processor and set aside in a bowl. Take ¾ cup of pesto and add to shredded zucchini. Stir to combine. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Place onion in a frying pan on stove and lightly saute for a few minutes (3ish) in a little butter, salt and pepper. Add the dried basil and mix to combine.
- Add the cooked onions to your zucchini mixture. Stir in pine nuts. Add parmesan and feta cheese. Mix it all up.
- Put cooked ground turkey into a separate bowl and add the rest of the pesto mixture. Stir to combine.
- In a prepared 9x13 baking dish, spread a little of the zucchini mixture on the bottom. Add a layer of noodles (uncooked). Spread some turkey over the noodles. Add a layer of zucchini. Sprinkle a generous amount of mozzarella cheese. Repeat the process until you use all your fillings. Top with remaining cheese and bake covered at 375 degrees for 1 hour. I take the top off the pan for the last 5 minutes to let the cheese brown a little cause I'm crazy like that.
- (I will warn you now...I am bad with ingredient amounts when it comes to pesto because I usually wing it myself--I'm pretty sure you can't mess it up too badly so get adventurous! Taste your creation at the end and keep adding ingredients until you are happy.)
- I'm sure there is an art to making pesto, but I just throw everything into the food processor except the olive oil and blend it up. I drizzle in the oil until I get the right consistency and then I taste it and adjust as needed. I told y'all I'm not a chef, right? 🙂