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Vegetable Lasagna - Gluten-Free, Low-Carb, Vegetarian

Posted Jan 29 2013 5:54pm

I made this Veggie Lasagna a couple of years ago and I have now perfected and tweaked the recipe a little.  I'd like to share it with you all...hope you enjoy.  

It is Gluten-Free, Low-Carb, No Noodles, Meat-Free, Vegetarian (Except for Dairy) and scrumptious!!

Vegetable Lasagna
Gluten-Free, Low–Carb, Vegetarian, Meatless

1 Medium Spaghetti Squash
3 Small Eggplant)
2 Medium Zucchini’s
1 Green Bell Pepper
1 Red Bell Pepper
1 Yellow Bell Pepper
1 Medium Texas Sweet Onion
1 Head Fresh Garlic
1 (5 oz.) Container Fresh Baby Kale
1 Cup Fresh Basil
2 Tb. Dried Oregano
1 (25 oz.) Jar Marinara Sauce
1 (32 oz.) Container Ricotta Cheese
1 ½ c. Fresh Shredded Asiago Cheese
1 Pack (8 oz.) Low Moisture Part Skim Mozzarella Cheese

Cut Spaghetti Squash in half, lengthwise, remove seeds, and place on platter with a ¼ c. water – Cover with Saran Wrap and Microwave for 10 minutes and set aside.

Slice Eggplant and Zucchini into long length slices – arrange on a platter with paper towels and salt both sides to draw out the water. Allow brining for 30 minutes. Pat slices dry with paper towels and brush away excess salt.  Lie flat on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes on 325 degrees in the center of the oven; then set aside to cool.

Sauté the Garlic, Bell Peppers, and Onions in Olive Oil until slightly tender; Add the Oregano, Basil, and Baby Kale and continue cooking on medium heat until kale is wilted and set aside the mixture.

Assembling the Lasagna:
Arrange in Layers, Bottom – Up >
Eggplant Slices
Spaghetti Squash
Marinara Sauce
Zucchini Strips
Ricotta Cheese
Asiago Cheese
Mixture of: Peppers, Onions, Kale, Herbs, etc.

Cooking the Lasagna:
Bake the Lasagna at 350 Degrees on center rack for an hour.
Add the Mozzarella Cheese and continue baking until cheese is melted and slightly browned.
Remove from oven and allow to stand for 20 minutes.

Healthy Highlights Summary:

Eggplant – The Health Benefits of Eggplant
The skin of the eggplant contains a potent antioxidant phytonutrient called nasunin; which is a free radical scavenger that has been shown to protect cell membranes from damage, especially in the joints – leading to investigation of its use as a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.  Nasunin also functions as an iron chelator.  While iron is an important part of nutritional health – too much iron can cause oxidative damage.  This is mostly evidenced in postmenopausal women who no longer menstruate to remove excess iron from the body.

Spaghetti Squash – The Health Benefits of Spaghetti Squash
Spaghetti Squash is a good source of vitamins A, C, beta-carotene, potassium, and folate. While low in calories – it contains ample amount of fiber.

Zucchini – The Health Benefits of Zucchini
As a rich source of powerful antioxidants, lutein and zeaxanthin, zucchini may be helpful in providing protection from common age-related eye disorders like: macular degeneration and cataracts. It is also a good sources of the B-Complex vitamins , which may assist in blood sugar regulation.

Kale – The Health Benefits of Kale
Kale is a super food with an amazing array of health benefits. Serving both as an antioxidant powerhouse and detoxification aid; Kale offers support to the body through many mechanisms and it has been widely researched.  Studies show Kale as an anti-cancer (risk-lowering) food due to its glucosinolate compounds.  One of which is Indole -3 Carbinol; which is showing promising evidence in the war against breast cancer.  Specifically it prevents the adherence of estrogen to breast receptor sites. Research has also correlated a lower risk observation with high intakes of kale offering benefits of protection from colon, breast, bladder, prostate, and ovarian cancers. 

Onions – The Health Benefits of Onions
Onions are high in polyphenols and flavanoids.  Quercetin, a type of flavanol, has garnered a great deal of attention over the years due to it’s’ ability to hamper histamine production and release, thereby making it a natural anti-inflammatory.  The release of histamines is the body’s natural reaction to allergies.  Inhibiting the release of histamines can improve a person’s “over-reaction” to allergens.   Quercetin is most concentrated in apple peels, green tea, and red onions, and to a lesser degree in other onion varieties.  There is research that may indicate a possible link between higher flavanoid consumption and lower pancreatic cancer occurrences.  Onions are also good source of chromium.  

Garlic – The Health Benefits of Garlic
Garlic is one of the most widely researched medicinal foods of all time.  The nutritional impact of consuming garlic regularly cannot be matched.  In particular the sulfur-rich compound, allicin, is mostly responsible for the health benefits researched to date.  Garlic has been shown to positively affect the cardiovascular system, the immune system, the digestive tract, and help prevent certain types of cancers.  Also, for centuries, garlic has been a major player in research surrounding the anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-microbial effects of certain foods and herbs.

Bell Peppers – The Health Benefits of Bell Peppers
Bell Peppers, particularly Red Bell Peppers, are high in Vitamin C.  All varieties of bell peppers offer a wide range of anti-oxidant carotenoids, over 30 different types in fact, making them a top source nutritionally.  Phytonutrients of carotenoids and flavanoids in bell peppers have been shown to provide an overall reduced risk from many diseases.

Basil & Oregano – The Health Benefits of Basil and Oregano
Flavanoids, Orientin and Vicenin, in basil offer protection against DNA damage and basil’s volatile oils provide antibacterial protection. Additionally some of the aromatic oils in basil offer protection against infectious bacteria.
Oregano is anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, and anti-fungal. Pretty awesome little herb and tasty too!

Tomatoes (Marinara) – The Health Benefits of Tomatoes
Tomatoes are an excellent source of lycopene (an antioxidant carotenoid) which has been researched greatly over the past decade.  Lycopene has been shown to prove effective in protecting against an ever growing list of cancers including: pancreatic, colorectal, lung, prostate, breast, and endometrial cancers.
In particular – research is very promising in consideration of preventing prostate cancers in men.

In addition - diets that contain tomatoes often have been shown to help improve cholesterol profiles. But here’s the kicker – which we are learning more and more everyday…The magic lays within the unique synergy of a complete – whole plant (not an extracted constituent).
What does that mean? Simple – eat whole fruits and vegetables for the best overall healthy impact of the individual nutrients studied.  Certain nutrients, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytochemicals, and bioflavanoids all work “synergistically” to provide health and healing – not just one isolated part of that equation. So - why lycopene may very well be a superstar nutrient – we have still yet to understand how the test results are better using whole food verses an extracted nutrient…and that is why we should be eating the whole kit and caboodle!    

Dairy (Ricotta Cheese) – The Health Benefits of Dairy (Ricotta Cheese)
Dairy is a great source of both calcium and protein.  And The New England Journal of Medicine confirms that eating dairy may offer significant protection from gout. Ricotta cheese, in particular, is the best source of whey protein; the popular type of protein used so often today.

© 2008 - 2013 > Health and nutrition information provided is for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to be used as a substitute for advice provided by your physician, nutritionist, or health care provider.  
You should not use this information for diagnosing or treating any health condition or disease or for prescribing medications and/or other treatments.  Please consult your health care provider or nutritionist before starting any new diet or exercise program.  Information and statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.

By TR Hughes, © 2008 - 2013 All rights reserved worldwide.
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