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Turkey Lasagna with Zucchini Noodles, Mozzarella and Pesto

I won’t kid you, Lasagna always takes work but the efforts are always worthwhile and in this version the zucchini “noodles” are easily prepared at the same time using Convection.


It takes about 10 minutes to slice the zucchini and about 20 minutes to cook and cool them.


The turkey filling takes about 40 minutes to prep and cook and while that is cooking you can assemble the other ingredients so you are ready to layer everything into the casserole for baking. Once everything is prepped, layering the lasagna into the casserole is easy.


Convection or Convection Bake

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Larissa Taboryski

Ingredients


Zucchini Noodles


6 - large zucchini, ends trimmed each cut lengthwise into 6 ¼” thick slices

½ - teaspoon mixed Italian seasoning

2 - tablespoons olive oil


Turkey Filling


1 - tablespoon olive oil + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 - lb ground dark turkey meat (or ground beef if you prefer)

1 - medium yellow onion, peeled and cut into 1” dice

3 - cloves garlic, peeled and minced

Dash of ground chili flakes if you like some spice

1 - 15oz can whole peeled tomatoes

2 - tablespoons tomato paste


Additional Ingredients


1 - 15oz container Ricotta cheese

1 - 4 oz container Pesto (or ½ cup homemade)

1 ½ - lbs shredded Mozzarella cheese

Preparation

Preheat the oven to Convection or Convection Bake 400 degrees


Lay the zucchini slices onto 2 rimmed baking sheets, sprinkle with the seasoning and drizzle with some olive oil, salt and pepper and cook for 15 - 20 minutes until softened, then set aside to cool.


Meanwhile heat a large heavy skillet or saute pan over moderate heat, when hot add the oil and butter and when the butter sizzles increase the heat and add the ground turkey.  Break it up with a fork and cook over medium high heat until evenly browned.  Turn off the heat and remove the turkey from the pan with a slotted spoon.


Return the pan to heat and over moderate heat saute the onion until softened, add the garlic and cook for a few minutes before adding the tomatoes.  Cook over moderate heat breaking the tomatoes with the back of a spoon (you can use chopped tomatoes if you prefer) then stir in the tomato paste.  Add the browned turkey and any accumulated juices to the pan and simmer for 20 - 30 minutes.  Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.


Layering the Lasagna


Spoon a little of the sauce onto the bottom of an oven casserole dish and add one layer of the cooked zucchini noodles.


  1. Add half  of the turkey mixture, spread over the noodles and top with a cup of mozzarella cheese

  2. Add another layer of noodles and spread the ricotta over the noodles, or flatten a few tablespoons between your palms and place over the noodles.

  3. Gently spread a layer of pesto over the ricotta and top with another loosely packed cup of mozzarella and another layer of noodles

  4. Add the remainder of the turkey, another cup of cheese and the final layer of noodles.

  5. Spread a little more pesto over the top of the noodles and top with a sprinkling of mozzarella cheese.


Preheat the oven to Convection Bake 325 degrees

Cut a sheet of foil to fit the casserole and lightly oil the non-shiny side.


Cover the casserole loosely so the foil doesn’t stick to the cheese and bake on the middle rack for 25 minutes.


Remove the foil and bake for another 15 minutes until the cheese is bubbling, allow the casserole to stand for at least 10 minutes before serving.


Serves 6 - 8

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Baked Ham with Tangerine Glaze and Roasted Carrots

Since ham is already cooked by smoking it is most often eaten cold, however heated through and brushed with a fruity glaze it makes a great centerpiece for celebration meals.  


In order to heat the ham through it usually needs a fair bit of time in a slow oven and to avoid drying out the meat it is covered until the final stage when the glaze is added. However, if you bake your unsliced ham in Convection you will not need to cover the ham and the heating through time will take approximately 1 ½ - 2 hours, depending on the weight of the ham. If you are heating a sliced ham then it must remain covered in foil to avoid drying out.

PDF Recipe

Ingredients

Preparation

1 - smoked ham, bone-in, skin on 7 - 9 lbs

1 - bunch fresh sage leaves

¾ - cup olive oil

1 - cup unsalted butter, cut into chunks

2 - cups tangerine juice

2 - tangerines, sliced thin, seeds removed

2  - cups, packed light brown sugar

1 - cup water

½ - teaspoon whole cloves

2 - cinnamon sticks

1 ½ - lbs baby carrots

Preheat the oven in the Convection Mode 300 degrees.


Place the ham on a rack in a large roasting pan. 


Score the ham with cuts in a diamond pattern about 2 inches apart and ½ deep. 


Season generously with salt and pepper. Chop 8 of the sage leaves and mix with the olive oil to make a paste, rub all of the ham getting into the slits.


Bake for 2 hours.


Glaze: 


Combine the  butter, tangerine juice, tangerines, brown sugar, water and spices in a heavy medium saucepan and heat over medium heat.  


Bring to a gentle boil and simmer until the liquid is reduced to a syrupy glaze, 30 - 40 minutes.


Brush the glaze over the ham when it has completed its initial heating phase. Add the baby carrots and another 8 chopped sage leaves and continue baking for another 40 - 50 minutes until the carrots are tender and the internal temperature of the ham is 150 degrees.


Serves 12

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