Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Perfect for Summer

My mother has had a great zucchini yield so far this summer.  I took two very large zucchini off her hands.  I really love zucchini.

I got to use the zucchini in a few recipes that I have been wanting to try for a long time.  I already posted this great zucchini pasta recipe. The second recipe that I used the zucchini for was a yummy no-bake lasagna recipe.  I had seen it in my Everyday Food magazine two summers ago and thought it looked both delicious and beautiful...but I didn't get an opportunity to make it then.  But when those lovely zucchini were given to me, I knew I needed to try this recipe.  It sounds so simple, but the flavors together were absolutely wonderful.  I would even suggest that it would work great tossed with any favorite pasta (penne, rigatoni, spaghetti, linguine, etc.--I'll expound on that in the recipe notes).

I hope you like it!

No-Bake Summer Lasagna


1/2 cup ricotta
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan
3 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
coarse salt and ground pepper
8 lasagna noodles, broken in half crosswise
1 small garlic clove, minced
2 pints grape tomatoes, halved
2 zucchini (about 1 pound total), halved if large and thinly sliced
1 tablespoon torn fresh basil leaves, plus more for serving


In a small bowl, combine ricotta, Parmesan, and 2 teaspoons oil; season with salt and pepper.  In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook noodles according to package instructions; drain.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high.  Add garlic and tomatoes; season with salt and pepper.  Cook, stirring, until slightly broken down, about 3 minutes.  Transfer tomatoes to a bowl.  Add 1 tablespoon oil and zucchini to skillet; season with salt and pepper.  Cook, stirring, until zucchini are tender, about 5 minutes.  Transfer to another bowl and stir in basil.

Place some tomatoes on four plates; top with a noodle and small spoonfuls ricotta, zucchini, and more tomatoes.  Repeat layering twice, then top with remaining noodles and tomatoes.  Garnish with basil.

Source: Everyday Food recipe, June 2010, found here.

Notes: I cooked the noodles whole and used kitchen shears to cut each lasagna noodle into thirds.  I also probably used a little more ricotta than 1/2 cup.

The garlic, grape tomatoes, and zucchini were such a flavorful combination.  If you don't want to make this as a lasagna, I would suggest following the instructions for making the ricotta mixture and cooking the garlic/tomatoes and zucchini.  Cook whatever kind of pasta you want, according to package directions (penne, rigatoni, campanelle, spaghetti, linguine, etc. would all work with this).  Place pasta in a large bowl and top with tomato/garlic mixture and zucchini/basil mixture.  Toss to combine.  Place on serving plates and top with a dollop of the ricotta mixture.  Yum!

Above: I finally tried it.  And yes, the lasagna easily converts to a tossed pasta.  I used rigatoni here, but penne, campanelle, bow ties, shells, etc. would also work.


  1. It looks hard to eat. Did you have trouble cutting up the lasagna so that you could get bites with all the flavors?

  2. The pretty factor of this dinner ends as soon as you start eating it, that's for sure. Jeremiah cut his lasagna noodles up before he even started eating so that he could get bites of everything. I cut it as I went. It worked fine. But that's why I think this would be so well suited to doing it with your favorite pasta (rigatoni, spaghetti, penne, etc.). Because you have to mix it up anyway, you can just skip the cutting altogether by using your favorite pasta. But the vegetable/ricotta mix was heavenly. It's worth a try.