I love me a hearty lasagna. One that has vegetables and cheeses and meat and is nice and thick. Problem is that one like that is also super high in calories.
With this one, I've tried to lighten it a bit by using fat-free cottage cheese, low-fat ricotta, low-fat mozzarella cheese and ground turkey breast.
Served it for dinner the other night and it got high praise from the hubby, who usually looks sideways at me when I mention ground turkey, low fat or fat free...
Karen's Ground Turkey Lasagna
12 oz box of oven ready lasagna noodles
1.25 packet of ground turkey breast
Jar of pasta sauce (I used Ragu's sun dried tomato and sweet basil)
15 oz can diced tomatoes
15 oz can tomato sauce
15 or 16 oz tub of small curd fat free cottage cheese
15 or 16 oz tub of low-fat ricotta cheese
1 cup of shredded Italian blend cheese ( I used GV ready shredded from Wal-Mart)
1 1/2 cups shredded low-fat Mozzarella cheese
1 1/2 cups Parmesan cheese
2 tsps freshly grated whole nutmeg (you can adjust this to your personal taste)
1 Red bell pepper, chopped into chunks
2 cups of mushrooms, chopped into chunks (I used baby 'bellas)
6 cups of chopped fresh spinach
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp dried basil or 1 tbsp of fresh chopped basil (adjust according to taste)
Freshly ground pepper
Olive oil cooking spray
Sheet of aluminium foil, large enough to cover lasagna pan
Preheat oven to 400 deg F . Spray a 9 x 13" lasagna pan with olive oil cooking spray.
Mix the cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, cup of Italian blend cheese and freshly ground nutmeg together. Cover and put in fridge until ready to use.
Spray a large frying pan with olive oil. Add the mushrooms and red pepper to the pan. Saute over a low heat until just tender.
Add spinach to pan and saute over a low heat until spinach has wilted. This should not take too long. Tip vege mixture into a colander and let drain while you make the meat sauce mixture.
Spray a large frying pan with olive oil. Saute the onions and garlic, over a low heat, until almost translucent. Be careful not to let them brown.
Add ground turkey to onion and garlic mix and stir until turkey is cooked through, breaking up any large lumps of meat as you go.
Add pasta sauce, undrained diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and basil, to the meat mixture. Mix in well.
Now it's time to assemble the lasagna !!
Pour half the meat sauce into the bottom of the dish. Lay the lasagna noodles on top of the sauce. I used five noodles sheets. You may have to break them to fit.
Spread the drained spinach mixture over the noodles. You don't need to squeeze all the moisture out of the spinach. A little juice is fine. Add a little sprinkle of freshly ground pepper.
Put another layer of noodles on top of the spinach mixture.Spread the ricotta/nutmeg/cheese mixture over the noodles. Grind some fresh pepper on top.
Put another layer of noodles on top of the cheese mixture, then spread the rest of the meat sauce over the noodles.
View of the layers of the assembled lasagna.
Tightly cover lasagna pan with sheet of aluminium foil. Place dish in preheated oven. You might like to put the dish on a cookie sheet to catch any drips. Bake for about an hour or until noodles are fork tender.
About 10 minutes before the end on the cooking time, mix the Mozzarella and Parmesan cheese together and spread over top of lasagna. At this point, I usually leave the dish uncovered, so that the cheese can brown slightly.
Remove from oven and let sit for about 10 minutes or so. this gives the lasagna time to 'set'. That way, when you cut it, it should hold together.
Serve with a side salad and garlic bread.
3 hours ago