Friday, February 20, 2009

I really outdid myself tonight!

In the 5 years we have been gluten free I have never attempted to make a GFCF lasagna before. And if I do say so myself, I made a pretty mean lasagna in the past. I think it was the idea of the cheese that intimidated me the most. After all it is hard to find a GFCF cheese that is decent.

So, what led me to try making it today? A friend recently decided that gluten free was not something for her and she gave me a ton of gluten free items that she wasn't going to use and a package of lasagna noodles were included. Well, I'm not one to let anything go to waste and my dear husband was salivating at the idea of lasagna. Andy, has never had lasagna but he sure wanted to try it - after all he knew that Garfield loves it!

And I must say - it turned out wonderful! Really really yummy. It got 3 thumbs up from the three of us! My biggest challenge was figuring out what to replace the ricotta cheese with - I searched the internet (google is my friend) and found several recipes, but none that really seemed to fit what I wanted - most had too much salt or used ingredients I don't have on hand so using them as a guide, I made up my own and I think it turned out wonderful.

Here are the pics of the finished product:

And here is the recipe:
GFCF Lasagna

Step One – make GFCF Ricotta

1 box extra firm tofu (14 oz)
¼ cup olive oil
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
2 Tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon parsley
¼ cup lemon juice
Mash with potato masher to mix – you want it to have the same texture as ricotta so you don’t want to over mix.

Step Two – Prepare meat sauce

1 lb mild Italian sausage (I used turkey)
1 lb ground meat (I used ground bison – manager’s special at $1.99 – normally I probably would have used turkey)
1 yellow onion, chopped (about ¾ cup)
1 large garlic clove, minced
2 - 15 oz cans diced tomatoes (I used Muir Glen, one with tomato and basil and one with tomato and onion)
2 – 8 oz cans tomato sauce
2 Tablespoons dried parsley
2 Tablespoons sugar (I used rapadura)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon basil
½ teaspoon oregano
Cook sausage and ground meat with onion and garlic until meat is done and onion is translucent. Drain off all fat.
Add remaining ingredients and simmer for about an hour or until the consistency of runny spaghetti sauce – I wanted it runny since I was using no boil lasagna noodles and wanted the extra liquid for the noodles to absorb.

Step Three – Shred fake mozzarella cheese
I used Follow your Heart brand since it actually melts.
Step Four – assemble the lasagna
Put a thin layer of meat sauce in the bottom of your dish.
Put a layer of noodles – I used 3 across and then one broken into thirds along the bottom.
Layer 1/3 of the remaining meat sauce
Layer 1/3 of the mozzarella
Layer 1/3 of the ricotta
A second layer of noodles
1/3 of meat sauce
1/3 of the mozzarella
1/3 of the ricotta
Third layer of noodles
1/3 of meat sauce (reserving just a bit for the top)
1/3 of the mozzarella
1/3 of the ricotta
top with reserved sauce – make sure lasagna noodles are totally covered.

Cover pan with foil and bake for one hour at 350 degrees.
Let set for 15 minutes before cutting and serving.
And because I like playing with my software, here are the nutrition facts:


TimsMomMom said...

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Shannon said...

We are new to Gluten free (it's only been 4 days) but have been dairy (casein) free and egg free for over a year. I'm just trying to figure out the gluten free ingredients that are head is spinning. This looks great! I loved your Garfield comment, my little one has been asking for lasagna for that very reason. But I'm with you on the substitute cheese thing, yuck. Your ricotta mix is cool. One question, I thought the nutritional yeast was on the bad list, I was about to throw mine out, now I'm curious, it is really okay? Either way you are officially bookmarked. I can't wait to see what else you have come up with.

Kathi said...

You make a good point. Sometimes I get so used to using things that I don't stop to think about clarifying.

With nutritional yeast it depends on what it is grown on - some is grown on barley (frontier brand maybe?) and some is grown on sugar beets or other things. If it was grown on barley or anything with gluten, it will not be safe.

I know Bob's Red Mill and Red Star are safe.

Shannon said...

Oh. It's good to know that there is a chance to get to keep it around. Thanks.

Amber said...

I make a similar lasagna, but stir a tub of Tofutti Cream Cheese into the tofu "ricotta" mixture. It really adds a creaminess that mimics ricotta very well.