Tag Archives: lower carb

#FoodieFriday Zucchini Lasagna #Recipe

I’ve been trying to watch my carbs because that’s the one thing that really helps me lose weight and feel better. It’s tough, because I’m a carboholic, but recent studies indicate that diets that are lower in carbs are better than diets low in fat.

With that in mind, I’ve curtailed carbs and have lost over twenty pounds. This is, sadly, another of my downs on the roller coaster that is my weight, but still, better to be on the down side of it.

Since it has worked for me, I’ve been playing around with how to lighten the carbs in what would normally be carb heavy dishes, like lasagna. Last week I made a lower carb and lower fat lasagna for a holiday party. I’m sharing the recipe with you today!

Ingredients

4 to 5 medium zucchini, thinly sliced lengthwise
4 cups spaghetti sauce (if you don’t have any homemade, try Classico 4 Cheese Sauce)
2 pounds skim milk ricotta cheese
1 pound skim milk mozzarella shredded
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/8 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 egg
Olive oil
Barilla No Bake Lasagna Sheets

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Place paper towels in a colander and empty ricotta onto paper towels. See Step 1 below. This is to help get rid of some of the extra moisture that can make your lasagna runny.

In a non-stick pan with very little olive oil, brown the zucchini slices and place on a paper towel to soak up any access oil. See Step 2. Some recipes call for using the zucchini raw, but again, this creates too much moisture and that brown on them is caramelization that adds flavor to the dish.

In a big bowl, beat the egg, add then add 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, 1/4 of the shredded mozzarella, the parsley and the ricotta. Mix until blended.

Once you’ve got all the zucchini cooked and the ricotta mix done, spray a 9×13 pan with a little oil and do a layer of spaghetti sauce. Just enough to cover the bottom. Add the first layer of Barilla No Bake sheets. I only use these at the top and bottom to strengthen the layers.

Spoon the ricotta mixture onto the lasagna sheets and smooth out. Then arrange the zucchini slices perpendicular to the lasagna sheets. Why perpendicular? To add body to the lasagna so it will hold together. See the Assembly photo below.

Top the zucchini slices with a little spaghetti sauce and 1/4 of the shredded mozzarella. No ricotta this layer.

Add another layer of zucchini slices perpendicular to the first layer. Again, alternate the layout of the slices to help stabilize the layers. Top this layer with some spaghetti sauce, the remaining riccota, and another 1/4 of the mozzarella.

Finish the top of the lasagna with the Barilla lasagna sheets running perpendicular to the layer below this. Smooth spaghetti sauce all over and make sure you cover every inch of the sheets, but don’t make it too wet. Top with the remaining mozzarella and parmesan cheese.

Bake for about 45 – 60 minutes. Let sit for about 30 minutes before serving.

ZucchiniLasagnaSteps

#FoodieFriday Lower Fat/Carb Mac & Cheese

Who doesn’t love mac and cheese? It’s the kind of comfort food that warms the belly and calms the soul, but oh man, talk about fat and carbs.

There is a way to cut back on both and still have a hardy and rewarding meal with a little less guilt or worry. This is my version of a lower fat/lower carb Mac and cheese. I hope you’ll enjoy it!

Ingredients

4 cups Cauliflower
1/2 pound pasta
3 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped ham
1 chopped onion
3 cups 1% milk
2 cups cheddar cheese
Panko bread crumbs

Directions

Cut the cauliflower into one inch pieces. I was able to find an orange cauliflower at a local farm stand for only $2.00! Yes, I love being frugal also! Steam the cauliflower until just a little tough to a poke with a fork. It will cook some more when you bake it. After steaming, rinse with cold water to stop the cooking while you assemble the rest of the ingredients.
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Cook the 1/2 pound of pasta until al dente. I used cavatappi since they hold the sauce and add a little fun to the mix. After draining the water, rinse the pasta with cold water to stop the cooking while you assemble the rest of the ingredients.
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Chop the ham and cook in the olive oil to get rid of that extra moisture. Then add the onion and cook until just translucent. Turn down the heat a little and add the flour. Mix it all up until it’s a little on the dry side. If you’re using some kind of cast iron stove to oven pan, this will happen quickly from the pan retaining the heat, so really turn it down until you add the milk.
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Add the milk to the ham, onion, and flour mix. Stir until sauce is thick enough to coat the spoon. Add the cheese and stir. Then add the cauliflower and pasta and mix well.

If you haven’t used a stove to oven baking pan/dish, place the mixture in a greased baking dish. Top with the Panko and if you’d like, some additional cheese. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes and then broil for about 2-4 to brown the top! Voila, you are done!

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