Zucchini “Ravioli” or “Lasagna” With Turkey and Kale Filling

19 02 2014

The idea of using veggies as an understudy for pasta ravioli or lasagna is brilliant. I’ve seen pics for this all over pinterest, but the blog I finally stumbled on to check out the how-to for the ravioli, was CupcakesOMG!. Her how-to pics using squash are fab, so much so, that I’m not going to recreate them, I’ll just link you to them here.

I used zucchini instead of squash, and went rogue on the filling and the sauce, but don’t feel confined to either of our recipes – use whatever filling and sauce you’d like. Once you get the ravioli or lasagna technique down, the variations are endless!

I set out to make the ravioli tonight, however I underestimated how long it would take. It’s not hard, it’s just a little time-consuming. So after making a few of the ravioli, I switched my game plan and built a zucchini lasagna out of the remaining ingredients and baked them both together. Below I show both options…both are equally delicious!

Zucchini "Ravioli" or "Lasagna" With Turkey and Kale Filling

Zucchini “Ravioli” or “Lasagna” With Turkey and Kale Filling

Zucchini "Ravioli" or "Lasagna" With Turkey and Kale Filling

Zucchini “Ravioli” or “Lasagna” With Turkey and Kale Filling

The following serves 3-4:

  • 4-5 small-medium zucchini
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 cup packed chopped kale
  • 1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 can (15 oz) crushed tomatoes
  • Handful fresh parsley, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Shredded sharp provolone
  • Grated parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400.

Cut ends of the zucchini off and slice down the middle so you have two halves. Using the narrowest setting on your mandolin, slice the zucchini into long, flat strips.

In a large skillet, heat 1 Tbsp oil over medium heat. Add half the diced onion and saute for about 5 minutes, until softened. Add half the minced garlic and saute until fragrant. Season lightly with salt to taste. Add ground turkey and raise the heat to medium-high. Saute, until meat is cooked all the way through, about 5 minutes. I used a little homemade sausage seasoning to add some extra flavor to the meat. You can skip this step, but here’s the recipe for the seasoning I use: https://thisgirlsgottaeat.wordpress.com/2014/02/05/sweet-potato-spicy-turkey-sausage-soup-with-kale/.

While the meat cooks, make your sauce. In a saucepan, add another Tbsp or so of oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add the rest of the diced onion and cook for a few minutes until soft. Add the rest of the minced garlic and a pinch of red pepper flakes, cook for another minute. Add tomatoes, bring to a boil, season with salt and pepper to taste, then reduce heat, cover and simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Off heat, add parsley and use an immersion blender to puree the sauce slightly.

Meanwhile, add kale to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add ricotta, 2 Tbsp grated parmesan, salt and pepper to taste. Process until smooth. Once the turkey is cooked through, remove from heat and mix in the kale-ricotta puree.

Assemble the ravioli by just barely overlapping two strips of squash next to each other lengthwise. Do the same over the middle of the first two strips, but perpendicular, creating a cross or “t” shape. Spoon the turkey/kale filling in the center of the cross, then bring all the ends of the squash strips together, overlapping each other, to create a square-looking “ravioli”. Check out the blog linked above for specific how-to pics.

Spray a casserole with non-stick spray and put a little of the tomato sauce on the bottom (just enough to coat the bottom). Next, place the ravioli seem-side down. If making the lasagna instead, lay strips of zucchini end to end, across the whole casserole dish, on top of the sauce. Add a layer of the meat mixture, top with another layer of zucchini. Add the remaining meat and top with a final layer of zucchini (from bottom to top it should be zucchini, meat, zucchini, meat, zucchini). Add a layer of sauce on top of the zucchini and finish with a layer of shredded provolone.

Regardless if you’re making ravioli or lasagna, cover casserole with foil and bake for 15-25 minutes, or until zuchini is tender and the filling is warmed through. Remove foil and bake uncovered for another 5 minutes.

To serve, dish out ravioli or lasagna and top with a little more sauce if desired. Garnish with parmesan cheese and serve with a salad.

Mushroom Wonton Ravioli With a Pesto-Bechamel Sauce

16 01 2014

Since you get a healthy amount of wonton wrappers in one package, it can be a challenge to use them all at once. Need an idea for what to do with the extras? There are so many great things you can whip up, including quick ravioli! And of course, what is ravioli without sauce? A great sauce doesn’t have to take all day…for instance a bechamel, which is a white sauce made from milk and a roux of butter or oil and flour, can be made on a weeknight. You can add cheese to flavor it, or even a little homemade or store-bought pesto, which goes great with this mushroom filling.

Mushroom Wonton Ravioli With a Pesto-Bechamel Sauce

Mushroom Wonton Ravioli With a Pesto-Bechamel Sauce

The following serves 2 (compliments of This Girl’s Gotta Eat):

  • Olive oil
  • 1 shallot, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 (8 oz) package sliced baby bella mushrooms
  • Wonton wrappers
  • 2 Tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups skim milk
  • Nutmeg, grated
  • 2 Tbsp pesto
  • Parmesan cheese, grated

In a large skillet, heat a little oil over medium-high and saute shallot until soft, a few minutes. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, another minute. Add mushrooms and cook until browned, stirring often for about 5 minutes. Turn off heat and allow mushrooms to cool slightly. Mix in some parmesan cheese.

Bring a pot of water to boil and make the ravioli. Place some of the mushroom mixture in the center of a wonton wrapper. Don’t over stuff or the wonton will tear. Dip finger in a bowl of water and moisten the sides of the wrapper. Fold the wrapper over into a triangle and press moistened sides together to stick.  Finish building the ravioli and set aside.

Next work on the bechamel sauce, you can make this right in the skillet you used to cook the mushrooms. Heat 2 Tbsp of oil, once hot, whisk in 2 Tbsp of flour. Cook for a minute to make sure the flour is incorporated into the oil. Then, whisk in the milk. Continue to whisk until sauce thickens. Season with a little grated nutmeg to taste. Finally, stir in pesto. Lower heat to simmer and keep warm.

Once the water is boiling, drop in the ravioli and cook for 2-3 minutes. When they come to the top they’re done. Remove ravioli with a slotted spoon and add right in the skillet with the pesto-bechamel sauce. Gently toss ravioli to coat in the sauce.

Divide ravioli among plates and top with a little more sauce and parmesan cheese. If you have extra mushroom filling you can garnish with that as well. This can be a meatless meal, or you can serve with a protein of your choice, such as sauteed chicken with arugula (shown above).