Category Archives: noodles

Crock Pot Lasagna-no kidding

I’m always looking for a way to save time while cooking without losing flavor. Don’t get me wrong, I love being in the kitchen chopping, stirring, and tasting. But some days there just isn’t time for that. For those days, there is the crock pot. Now, being a vegetarian means it’s not always as easy as just dropping a roast in there like some folks do.

Veggie, GF, Crockpot Lasagna

Veggie, GF,  Crock Pot Lasagna

Most ideas on the Web are not gluten-free, or vegetarian, or both. So, I decided to modify some of the recipes I found to make my own version of crock pot lasagna. My family was willing to give it a shot. The end result? I will never make lasagna in the oven again, seriously. This was just as good, if not a little better, than any other lasagna I’ve made. No pre-cooking noodles, no mess, minor clean up. Beat that! Give this a try and let me know what you think.

 Crock Pot Vegetarian, Gluten-free Lasagna

1 box gluten-free lasagna noodles (I used DeBole’s)

1 12 oz. container ricotta cheese (light or regular)

2 eggs

1 tsp each of garlic powder, dried parsley and salt

1/2 cup shredded Parmesan

2 cups shredded mozzarella

3 cups Marinara sauce (your own or your favorite brand)

2 cups chopped fresh spinach

2 TBS chopped fresh basil

1. Turn on a 6-quart crock pot to high (I use an oval). Spray with cooking spray or oil.

2. Mix Ricotta, eggs, spices and 1/4 cup Parmesan.

3. Pour about 3/4 cup Marinara on the bottom of the pot and spread it out to cover.

4. Layer with rice noodles so you have one even layer. Don’t worry about breaking them up to make a layer. It’s like a puzzle.

5. Cover noodles with 1/2 of the Ricotta mixture.

6. Next layer is 1/2 the spinach and 1 TBS basil.

7. Cover with another cup of Marinara and then repeat the next layer.

8. Top layer is another layer of noodles. Break it up to cover as well as possible.

9. Cover top layer of noodles with last of the Marinara, making sure to cover all of the noodles so they don’t dry out.

10. Cover the top with a layer of cheese and a few bits of fresh basil.

11. Cover and cook for 3 hours on high or 4-5 on medium/low. Check it after 3 hours to make sure it’s not cooking too fast. It should be bubbly on the sides and cooked well, and if you stick a knife into it there is very little resistance.

Note: I had planned to cook for four hours but stopped at 3 and it was perfect. Let it sit for a few minutes to firm up and serve with extra Marinara sauce if you have it.

This was so easy, even the kids can do it. There is no cooking involved, as long as you’ve already got the Marinara on hand. All it takes is layering and putting the top on. And if you mess up a layer and forget, who will know? I think Daughter switched the spinach and cheese layer in there somewhere, but it tastes great and that’s all that matter. Next up, try this with GF penne or spaghetti, just like my last version here, only easier.

Enjoy!

 

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Filed under dinner parties, gluten free, lasagna, mozzarella, noodles, spinach, vegetarian

Egg "noodles" the grain-free way

Egg “noodles” with marinara

I’ve been absent for a bit, taking care of school work and remodeling work. But never fear, I’ve still been cooking and eating. After so long trying to curb the amount of grains in my diet, I fell off the wagon and went gangbusters on cookies, cakes, cupcakes, etc. for the past month. Finally, I’m back on track and feeling so much better.

Which means I’m still hungry, I just have fewer items on the menu. Noodles are one of my favorites and trying to find alternatives can be difficult. I’ve used raw zucchini in long, thin strips and it’s wonderful with pesto, and I love spaghetti squash as a pasta alternative, but what if I’m trying to add more protein in my diet as well?

Aha, it hit me today while watching Jamie Oliver on TV while he made crepes and cut them in long, thin strips for a salad. Why not do that with eggs? I scrambled 2 eggs and 2 egg whites with a bit of salt, pepper and garlic powder. The rest is so easy it’s crazy.

These are the “noodles” without sauce so you can see. Pretty, huh?

In a hot skillet with a little butter, add a small amount of eggs, just enough to cover the pan without leaving open spots (how much you use depends on the size of your pan. Just imagine you’re making a crepe). Swirl it around until you get an even layer. Then let it cook without touching it for about1- 2 minutes depending on the size of your pan. It should start to get well done on the edges. Then gently lift it from the pan and flip it. (you might need to get the hang of this, but it’s easy after the first one.) Cook another minute on the other side.

After you have a few of your egg “crepes,” stack about 3-4 of them and roll them in a tight cigar shape. Then cut in strips from one end to the other, essentially making pinwheels. When you uncurl them and fluff them, you now have long, thin egg “noodles” to add anything you want. I had some marinara and shredded Parmesan, which was wonderful. The noodles were chewy and had a nice bite, reminded me of an egg noodle from long ago. But it’s not a real noodle so don’t look for that texture. I liked the egg taste of it and the way it worked with the sauce and cheese. Perhaps using them as manicotti and rolling some cheese might work, or serving with pesto, goat cheese, Parmesan, roasted mushrooms, etc. The possibilities are endless. Yum.

Enjoy!

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Filed under cooking, egg, gluten free, grain-free, noodles, protein, vegetarian