Summer ‘Lasagna’

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Things slowed down this past week.  We recently lost a dear friend.  I’m not going to elaborate here but I felt the need to pull out and take a little time to myself.  Well it’s never time to myself, but time with me and my children and with Josh when he wasn’t at work.  It seemed every time my mind wasn’t occupied I immediately thought of our friend.  There are so many questions I want answered with no answers to come.  I’m slowly losing this mind ‘preoccupation’, but I still think of him often.  I dreamt of him last night, one of many times since his passing.  It lightens my sadness a bit after each dream.  Our friend died young, too young, but I truly feel he fulfilled his life purpose during his time.

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Now as I am moving back into the daily routine of life my meal creativity is coming back.  It’s too hot to cook extended meals in the oven, to spend long periods of time in the kitchen prepping, or to eat heavy foods.  This lasagna is my solution.  A no oven noodle free lasagna!  Patty pan squashes are in abundance around town and I purchase them every time we hit the farmer’s market.  Their shape is too fun!  So this is my play on a zucchini noodle lasagna.  Local heirloom tomatoes instead of tomato sauce, ground turkey, and ricotta cheese all layered on sautéd patty pan squashes.  With plenty of basil and oregano from the garden.

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Summer Lasagna (serves 2)

  • 12 oz ground turkey
  • 2 carrots, finely chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, finely celery
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup water
  • s&p
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons oregano leaves
  • 2 large patty pans
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 4 small tomatoes, sliced into thin rounds.
  • pecorino romano, to serve
  1. Heat up a medium sauté pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil.  Add carrots, celery, and onion.  Sauté a few minutes until fragrant.  Add the ground turkey and brown.
  2. Once meat is cooked through season with s&p and garlic powder.  Add tomato paste and water.  I didn’t measure but I’d say it was about 1/4 cup.  You can use less.  Let simmer until water is cooked off.
  3. Meanwhile chop patty pans.  The best way I can describe how I do this is to half them lengthwise and then make 1/4″ wedges, still cutting lengthwise.
  4. In another large sauté pan heat up remaining tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat.  Add the patty pans and cover.  Cook 5 minutes.  Remove lid and stir.  Patty pans should be about tender crisp.  If not cover and cook a few more minutes.  Stir in fresh basil and oregano.  Season with s&p.
  5. Layer patty pans in bowls.  Top with ground turkey mixture, ricotta cheese, and fresh tomato slices.  Serve with fresh grated pecorino romano.

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