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Spinach Lasagne (no pasta) low cal


Years ago, I did a bit of research on how to make healthy lasagne.  Since then, I can say after several experiments that I finally got it :)  This dish is a staple in our household and is often made when people are "dieting". :)

I don't like measuring stuff when I cook (non dessert dishes) so it was a bit of a challenge to approximate this recipe.  In any case I did my best and I think the recipe is pretty accurate.  Just a warning though, I couldn't find my camera the time I made this dish so all the photos were taken with my webcam. 

I often just use an entire pack of Spag Sauce just cause I don't like storing left over unused sauce in the fridge.  I forget about those pretty easily so my solution is to just cook all of it.

You can also use fresh Spinach if you prefer. I've used fresh Spinach before but I find it too tedious to clean them.  I don't have a stay home helper so it's really more convenient for me to just buy these in cans.  You just have to remember to drain them properly so as not to end up with spinach soup. Check out my video on how to drain vegetables in cans easily. 


Spinach Lasagne (no pasta)
Ingredients
Red Sauce
2 TBSP of vegetable oil
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
¼ kilo of ground chicken
1 tsp Salt
2 tsp Pepper
½ tsp Pinch of Sugar
1 TBSP Italian Seasoning
1 TBSP if dry Basil (best if fresh – about 10 leaves)
1 can of sliced button mushrooms
1 pack (a kilo) of Spaghetti Sauce (Italian Style)
White Sauce
1 container of Cottage Cheese
1 egg
Spinach
4 cans of Spinach, drained (Make sure Spinach is fully drained otherwise your lasagna will become watery.)
Parmesan Cheese (you can use mozzarella if you prefer but I like the smoky flavor of freshly grated parmesan)
Procedure:
Preheat oven at 350F/180C.
Heat oil & sauté onions. Let onions sweat for a few minutes on low heat. Add garlic and sauté (be careful not to burn). Add ground chicken and cook over medium heat – drain excess oil as needed.  Add salt, pepper, sugar and herbs. Add mushroom and cook for a few minutes until meat cooks (no hint of pink).  Pour spaghetti sauce and adjust taste.  Let simmer for a few minutes and set aside.




In a medium sized bowl, beat cottage cheese and egg together.


Arrange in a deep dish.  Start with spag sauce, spinach, cottage cheese and end with spag sauce and sprinkle mozzarella/parmasean cheese on top.


When making lasagne (with or without pasta) always remember to start with sauce at the very bottom of the dish.  Otherwise you risk having the pasta stick to the dish while it bakes.  Believe me, this has happened to me and it's not very tasty.

 


Spread the cottage cheese mixture evenly to ensure the right distribution of flavor and color.  I chose cottage cheese cause it has less calories than ricotta cheese (which is often used in lasagne).  Just remember when using ricotta for this dish, you need an egg (or even just an egg white) to help bind it together.  Check out this link to find out how much calories were saved just by using cottage over ricotta.

Finish off with freshly grated parmesen cheese (my preference) or any cheese of your choice.

You might have left over red sauce for pasta the next day depending on the size of your dish :)
Bake for about 30 mins or until cheese starts to bubble.  Let it cool for a few minutes before serving.

If you want to make this dish with lasagne sheets you can just add more minutes to the baking time.  I usually just get the ready to back lasagne sheets.  Check the boxes for sheets that you don't need to cook (boil) before baking and just follow the time indicated on the box.

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