The final issue I had with this was of course cheese, since ideally you have cheese in your lasagna/casseroles. Instead of going totally cheese-less, I decided to top it with some dollops of my almond cream "cheese." Now, it won't melt and get all gooey, but it has a similar consistency to ricotta and is a decent cheese substitute here. If you don't want to make that, you can go cheese-less here- with all the other flavors it would still taste great! As always, if you are eating dairy, you should use cheese for sure! Some mozzarella/ricotta/parmesan would be fantastic here. Do whatever works best for you. Here is what I did:
Paleo Zucchini & Sausage "Lasagna"
(makes 4 servings)
- 1 lb bulk Italian mild sausage (use ground beef if you want)
- 1/4 onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 T olive oil
- 1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
- 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
- 1 t dried basil
- 1/2 t oregano
- salt & pepper
- 1 zucchini, sliced into long thin strips
- 1 c sliced mushrooms
- a few dollops of almond cream "cheese" (optional, or use real ricotta/mozzarella/parmesan if you aren't Paleo)
Heat 1 T oil in a skillet over medium-high. Once it is hot, add the onions, garlic, and sausage. Use a wooden spoon to break up the meat and cook until the sausage has no more pink showing. Add the tomatoes and tomato sauce, as well as the spices. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Give it a good stir and allow the meat/sauce mixture to bubble up, then turn the heat down to low and simmer for a few minutes. In the meantime, get your oven preheated to 350 degrees. Once the meat/sauce has simmered and is perfectly seasoned with all the flavors melded together, you can start your lasagna layering. Take a 9 x 9 pan and place a layer of the thin zucchini strips across the bottom. Next, scoop half of the meat/sauce mixture over top. Next, spread out half of the mushrooms across the top (and sprinkle on some cheese if you are using it). Repeat the layers. Add a couple dollops of almond cream "cheese" on top if you wish. Cover with foil and bake for 25-30 minutes until it is really bubbling. Here is is right out of the oven (notice the cheese blobs since it doesn't melt- oh well!).
Once you scoop this up to serve, it won't keep the shape that normal lasagna would, since there is no cheese to glue it all together, so it may get a little messy. But, it will taste delicious since all the flavors will be blended together and hot and full of Italian seasonings. This meal was really great and it was fun to experiment with a new idea. Maybe when we start eating dairy again I will try it with cheese and see how it goes. Stay tuned!