No-Noodle Zucchini Lasagna
This noodle-free lasagna celebrates summer by using an abundance of zucchini, which tends to overtake gardens this time of year. The three cheeses give the vegetarian lasagna plenty of richness, but for an even more substantial dish, you could add crumbled cooked Italian sausage on top of each layer of sauce.
- 3 1/2 lb. (1.75 kg) zucchini
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbs. olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 tsp. dried oregano
- 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
- 1 can (28 oz./875 g) crushed tomatoes
- 1 1/2 cups (1 1/2 oz./45 g) fresh basil, plus more for garnish
- 2 cups (1 lb./500 g) fresh full-fat ricotta
- 5 1/2 cups (1 lb. 6 oz./750 g) shredded mozzarella cheese
- 2 cups (8 oz./250 g) grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 egg
Preheat an oven to 375°F (190°C).
Using a mandoline, slice the zucchini lengthwise into planks about 1/4 inch (6 mm) thick. Arrange the slices in a single layer on baking sheets and sprinkle with salt. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes, then gently blot the zucchini with paper towels to soak up any moisture that has been released.
Transfer the baking sheets to the oven and bake until the zucchini is tender and slightly dried out, 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside.
In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion and sauté until translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic, oregano, red pepper flakes and a pinch each of salt and pepper and cook for 30 seconds more. Add the tomatoes with their juice and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and continue to cook until the sauce is slightly thickened, 5 to 7 minutes. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if necessary and set aside.
In a food processor, combine the basil, ricotta, 2 cups (8 oz./250 g) of the mozzarella, 1 cup (4 oz./125 g) of the Parmesan, the egg and pinch each of salt and pepper. Pulse until the mixture is smooth.
To assemble the lasagna, spread 1 cup (8 oz./250 g) of the sauce in the bottom of a lasagna pan. Arrange a quarter of the zucchini slices on top of the sauce followed by 1 cup (8 oz./250 g) of the ricotta mixture. Gently spread to evenly cover. Sprinkle 1 cup (4 oz./125 g) of the mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup (1 oz./30 g) Parmesan. Repeat 2 more times with sauce, zucchini slices, mozzarella and Parmesan. Top the lasagna with the remaining zucchini slices and spoon the remaining sauce on top. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup (2 oz./60 g) mozzarella and 1/4 cup (1 oz./30 g) Parmesan.
Bake the lasagna, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Increase the temperature to broil and continue to bake until the cheese on top is brown and bubbling, 3 to 5 minutes.
Remove the lasagna from oven and let stand for 15 minutes before serving. Serves 8 to 10.
Williams-Sonoma Test Kitchen