Vegetable and Goat Cheese Lasagna

This recipe is an attempt to take my favorite lasagna recipe, which is packed with lots of delicious but decidedly not-so-heart-friendly cheese, and make it a bit lower in fat and higher in veggies.  The success of this recipe relies on home-made tomato sauce and freshly-roasted veggies, which although time consuming, really makes the flavors pop.

Ingredients

For the sauce

  • 3 cans chopped tomatoes (in tomato juice)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 t sugar
  • 1 t balsamic
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 small jar roasted red peppers, drained
  • handful fresh herbs, chopped (I use basil and parsley)

For the filling

  • no-boil lasagna noodles
  • 250 g mozzarella, grated
  • 150 g parmesian, grated
  • 250 g goats cheese, crumbled
  • 250 g curd cheese/ricotta
  • 1 c cottage cheese
  • 1/2 c fresh herbs, chopped
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 t pepper
  • egg
  • 1 yellow pepper, diced
  • 1 eggplant, diced
  • 1 leek, diced
  • 4 portabello mushroom, diced
  • 1 zucchini, diced
  • olive oil for roasting

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C. To make the sauce, combine the tomatoes, roasted peppers, garlic, sugar, balsamic, and salt, and simmer over a low-medium heat for 30 minutes, until the tomato juices have reduced.
  2. Add the fresh herbs to the tomato sauce, stir, and simmer for an additional five minutes.  Remove from heat.
  3. When the sauce has cooled slightly, puree with a blender or hand blender.  Set aside.
  4. Toss the eggplant and pepper in 1 T olive oil, and roast in a large roasting pan for 15-20 minutes, until they start to become tender.
  5. Toss the leek, mushroom, and zucchini with an additional 1 T olive oil, and combine with the eggplant and pepper.  Roast an additional 10-15 minutes, until the vegetables are well done. Set aside.
  6. To make the lasagna filling, combine the goats cheese, cottage cheese, curd cheese/ricotta, fresh herbs, salt, pepper, and egg in a large bowl, and stir until well-combined.
  7. Combine the mozzarella and all but 1 c parmesian.
  8. Layer the lasagna as follows: spread 1/4 c sauce over the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish.
  9. Place 3 noodles on top of the sauce, drop 3 T of the ricotta mixture plus 1/2 c vegetable mixture down the center of each noodle, sprinkle with 1 c mozzarella, then spread 1.5 c sauce evenly over the cheese. Repeat two more times.
  10. Place the final 3 noodles on top of the sauce, then spread with 1 c sauce and the remaining parmesian.
  11. Lightly spray a large sheet of foil with nonstick cook spray, then tightly cover the lasagna. Bake 15 minutes, then remove the foil and bake until the cheese is spotty brown and the sauce is bubbling, about 25 minutes.
  12. Cool for 10 minutes before cutting, and serve warm.

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