Recipe Adapted by Chef Katie Mae; From PlantLab Culinary Academy
Makes 6 lasagna pieces | Ready in 1 hour | Stores 2 days in fridge
FOR THE LASAGNA
2 zucchinis, ends trimmed
1 large tomato, sliced ¼ inch thick and then cut into pieces roughly 1×3 inches
fresh herbs or microgreens, for garnish
sliced cherry tomatoes, for garnish
freshly ground pepper to taste
FOR THE RED PEPPER MARINARA
2 medium tomatoes, deseeded and chopped
1 red bell pepper, deseeded and chopped
1 cup sun-dried tomatoes, soaked for 4 hours
1 small shallot, minced
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
½ teaspoon red chili flakes, or more to taste
FOR THE RICOTTA
2 cups macadamia nuts, soaked for 4 hours
¼ cup water
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar OR white balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
FOR THE PISTACHIO PESTO
¼ cup pitted green olives
¼ cup water
2 tablespoons lemon juice
½ cup shelled pistachios
½ teaspoon ground black pepper, or more to taste
2 cups fresh basil, lightly packed
½ cup spinach, lightly packed
- Use a mandolin, with the thickness adjusted to about 1/8-inch, to slice the zucchini lengthwise. You want to create at least 9 slices that are 3 to 4 inches long. You can get a couple of slices from a longer slice.
- Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet, and lay out the zucchini slices in a single layer. Give each slice a light sprinkle of your no-salt seasoning, and then set the tray aside to rest while you make the cheese and puree.
- Drain the sun-dried tomatoes, squeezing out the excess water. Place all of the marinara ingredients in the food processor or blender and process until smooth. Place a fine mesh strainer inside a bowl, and then pour the marinara into the strainer to let excess moisture seep out. Set aside.
- Place all of the ricotta ingredients in a food processor or high-speed blender and process until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- In a food processor or blender, add the olives, water, and lemon juice. Blend until creamy. Add the pistachios and pulse briefly a couple of times. Then add the basil and spinach, and pulse into an even, semi-chunky consistency. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Bring back the tray of zucchini slices. Using a paper towel, gently pat each zucchini dry, so they don’t add excess moisture to your dish when plating. Group the zucchini slices into threes. Bring back your three fillings so everything is easy to access as you make your lasagna.
- To assemble the lasagna: Take a group of the zucchini and lay out the largest slice to be the bottom layer. Top it with a spoonful of one of your three fillings, and spread it out slightly to cover the zucchini slice. Add a slice of tomato and then the next largest zucchini slice. Add a second filling and another tomato slice. Gently add the last zucchini slice and the last of the three fillings. I suggest adding less of the filling for the top layers, treating it as part of the garnish.
- Repeat with the remaining zucchini slices and filling. Changing the order of the fillings gives this dish a beautiful presentation. Alternatively, you could build all three stacks at once.
- Using a spatula (aka flipper) transfer the lasagna pieces to your individual plates. Garnish with fresh basil, microgreens, sliced cherry tomatoes, and/or freshly ground black pepper.
I’ve been wanting to make a zucchini lasagna recipe for the last 6 months, but for whatever reason, another recipe was created instead. So naturally, I was stoked when I saw that a raw zucchini lasagna was part of my training at the PlantLab Culinary Institute.
Yet, I had no idea how much I’d love this recipe until I was putting the finishing touches on my plate. I loved being able to create a dish this gorgeous that was 100% whole plant foods without any oil or salt!
Our fabulous instructor, Mackenzie, taught PlantLab’s recipe which is plant-based, but it calls for oil and salt several times.
Being a sos-free chef (aka sugar, oil, and salt-free), I felt compelled to recreate this vibrant lasagna without any pleasure trap ingredients. My classmates didn’t, but I knew that the oil and salt were just not necessary for amazing flavor.
So that’s what I did, and now I’m inviting you to do the same.
This raw vegan lasagna is definitely more gourmet than most Plantz St. recipes, but I’m telling you it’s absolutely worth a little more prep time. The incredible line up of flavors from of the red pepper marinara, pistachio pesto, and macadamia ricotta is out of this world delicious!
Every bite is a mouthful of umami, and it doesn’t get better than that.
Just like I said with the recipe for Ravishing Red Beet Ravioli, please make some time for this recipe, so you can fully enjoy the preparation and the dining experience. You’ll be so grateful you did.