Individual Vegetable Lasagnas. Everytime I hear “Vegetable Lasagna”, it reminds me of an episode from the “Seinfeld” TV show. Elaine is on an airplane with her boyfriend Putty. The gentleman in the seat next to Elaine orders vegetable lasagna. Throughout the rest of the TV episode, the gentleman is referred to as “Vegetable Lasagna.”
Inspired by that episode comes a great recipe for Individual Vegetable Lasagnas. My recipe is based on fresh local squashes, bell peppers, and mushrooms. Of course, you could use another medley of vegetables or even add meat to this recipe. The “individual” portion sizes are fun to serve to your guests.
I like to make these little lasagnas in individual ramekins. Use the no-boil lasagna noodles (break in half to fit ramekin) and plenty of sauce. The filling is basically squash, bell pepper, and mushrooms. Cream cheese makes an entrance as a tangy creamy bit of wonderfulness. Lots of herbs add to the summery flavor. Shredded mozzarella tops the dish. Enjoy!
From the kitchen of A Food Lover’s Delight….
Individual Vegetable Lasagnas
4 c Roasted Tomato Sauce or Year-Round Tomato Sauce
2 T olive oil
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 zucchini squash, sliced
1 yellow squash, sliced
4 oz. cremini mushrooms, stemmed and sliced thin
1 t fresh basil, minced
1 t fresh thyme leaves, removed from stems
8 no-boil lasagna noodles
4 oz fat-free cream cheese, cubed then softened
1 c shredded mozzarella cheese
1 T fresh parsley, chopped
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Heat the tomato sauce in a small saucepan. Keep warm.
2. Saute the bell pepper and onion in the olive oil in a saute pan. Saute until the vegetables have softened slightly.
3. Add the zucchini and yellow squash and saute until the squashes are soft but are not falling apart.
4. Add the mushrooms, basil, and thyme, and saute 3 – 4 more minutes, or until the mushrooms are soft.
5. Spray 4 five-inch ramekins with cooking spray so the lasagnas won’t stick.
6. Break each of the 8 no-boil lasagna noodles in half. You will have 16 pieces, 4 for each ramekin.
7. Put 1/4 c sauce in each ramekin.
8. Place one piece of lasagna noodle in each ramekin.
9. Using half of the vegetable mixture, divide vegetable mixture into each ramekin.
10. Cover each vegetable mixture with another no-boil lasagna noodle.
11. Divide the cream cheese cubes amongst the ramekins.
12. Add another 1/4 c sauce to each ramekin.
13. Cover with another no-boil lasagna noodle.
14. Divide the remaining vegetable mixture amongst the four ramekins.
15. Use the last four lasagna noodles to cover the vegetable mixtures.
16. Add a 1/2 c sauce to each ramekin, or more, to cover the lasagna noodle on top.
17. Place four ramekins on a baking sheet and cover each ramekin with foil.
18. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until interior temperature is 160 degrees.
19. Remove foil, sprinkle shredded mozzarella cheese on top of each ramekin, and broil for a few minutes until the cheese melts and becomes brown and bubbly.
20. Place each ramekin on a plate. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.
Serves 4 as a main course. Offer with crusty garlic bread and a tossed green salad with my Tarragon Balsamic Dressing, Low Fat Blue Cheese Dressing, or Lemon Thyme Vinaigrette.
Variations: Add a tablespoon or two of basil pesto dribbled over the cream cheese layer or mix with the cream cheese to make a spreadable paste. You may prefer a drier lasagna or a wetter lasagna so decrease or increase the amount of tomato sauce, remembering that the no-boil lasagna noodles need enough moisture to cook properly. To lighten this recipe, cut back on the cheeses or use fat-free or low fat cheese. Omit the lasagna noodles and instead slice the squashes lengthwise before sauteeing, and use squash slices as the “lasagna noodles.” It works pretty well, too, although you might need to cut or trim the squash slices to fit into the ramekins.
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