Friday, February 4, 2011

Gluten Free Four Cheese Lasagna

I have always loved lasagna.  It has been my favorite meal since I was wee child.  My Aunt Ginger made the best lasagna in the history of lasagna.  I tried to glean what I could from her lasagna recipe when we would visit.  Unfortunately Aunt Ginger is a crafty one, all I could find was a small purple tupperware container that simply stated "lasagna spices".  She had anticipated people wanting her "secret recipe", so she premixed all the spices together and disposed of any evidence as to what was in there.

Finally I've decided to make a gluten free lasagna, and I can honestly say it isn't as good as my Aunt Gingers.  Shawn absolutely adored it and devoured it like he hadn't eaten in a week.


The Noodle

3/4 cup Quinoa Flour
3/4 cup Arrowroot Flour
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1/2 cup glutinous Rice Flour
3 eggs
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons Flaxseed Meal
6 tablespoons hot water
1 teaspoon Guar Gum
1 tablespoon water (if needed)

Begin by mixing the flaxseed meal and the 6 tablespoons of water together thoroughly.  Let this mixture sit out to thicken up (get goopy).  I totally love my Christmas present from my friend Cara, the read from above pyrex measuring cup pictured below.

Next whisk the flours, gums, and starches together thoroughly in your stand mixer bowl.

When finished thoroughly whisking the flours together, make a well in the flour for the wet ingredients.  Add in the oil, the eggs, and the flaxseed meal mixture.

Mix well, slowly incorporating more dry into the wet as you slowly shift the mixing bowls positioning.  This mixing step takes a long time, so relax and let it do the work for you.  The resulting dough is incredibly sticky.

I turned this sticky mess out onto a generously floured rolling mat, and added flour to the top.

Roll the dough to a uniform thickness for use as noodles.  This dough can be rolled too thin for the lasagna noodles if you're not careful.  The dough is sturdy when paper thin, but lasagna noodles should be a lot thicker than a sheet of paper.
I used a pizza cutter to cut this into manageable lasagna noodles.  Then began the layering.



The Meat Sauce

1 pound ground hamburger
1 can of tomato sauce (8 ounce)
1 medium vidalia onion
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon basil
2 tablespoons italian seasoning

The Cheeses

Cottage cheese
Grated Parmesan
Shredded mozzarella
ricotta (sometimes I use provolone for this one)

Begin by browning the ground beef.

Peel and dice the onion into small enough pieces to go into your food chopper.  I love this little kitchenaid chef's chopper I got for Christmas from Shawn.

Give it a few pulses, enough to make the onion into very very small pieces.  Dump the onion into the browning ground beef and stir in thoroughly.

When the meat is browned and the onions begin to carmelize, add the remainder of the spices and tomato sauce.  Simmer for a bit.

Now is the time to begin the layering of the lasagna.  There is just the Two of us here usually so I made it in a loaf pan.  If you are going to make a full size lasagna, just double this recipe.

Layer 1:  Line the bottom of the pan with noodle.
Layer 2:  Sprinkle mozzarella cheese (and provolone or riccotta)
Layer 3: Sprinkle lightly some of the meat sauce mixture.
Layer 4:  Sprinkle some cottage cheese and some parmesan.
The next layer is step 1 again, cover with a noodle.  Repeat all the steps over and over until you have reached the top of the pan.  The top layer was simply noodle, mozzarella, and parmesan.

Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes.  Cool on a wire rack a bit before serving.

Plate and enjoy!

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