Lazy Lasagna with Spinach and Fresh Tomato & Herb Sauce

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I had planned to make a legit lasagna the other day and was pretty pissed when I got set up to make it and realized I didn’t have any lasagna noodles.  I did have an overflow of brown rice penne though and decided pasta is pasta, and I may as well see if it works out well.  And I’m so thankful because it was by far, the BEST lasagna I had ever made!  I may do this from now on, because regular lasagna noodles can be a real pain in the ass and this was super simple.  I used to use the meatless sauce I first came up with awhile ago, but now that we don’t use any can products I started using fresh tomatoes from the farmer’s market (the BEST ones I’ve ever had) and herbs from our porch.  It’s pricier than the can version and doesn’t make a huge batch (about 2 cups) but it is so worth it!

                     

FOR THE LASAGNA

3/4 lb brown rice penne

2 cups fresh baby spinach

4 oz fresh mozzarella, sliced

1/2 cup shredded Parmesan

1 tbsp oil for the pan

TOMATO SAUCE

3 large fresh tomatoes, sliced

1/4 cup fresh basil leaves

1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/4 cup chopped fresh oregano

5 cloves garlic, minced

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp red wine vinegar

1 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

1 cayenne pepper, minced

  • In a large frying pan, heat 4 tbsp olive oil and cayenne over medium heat
  • After 3 minutes, add tomatoes, basil, parsley, oregano, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper and reduce to low/medium heat
  • Let simmer for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally
  • After 45 minutes, add garlic, cook for an additional minute, then remove from heat
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Pour 1 tbsp oil into the bottom of and 8 X 8 pan so it’s completely covered
  • Add 1/2 of the pasta evenly, then layer with half the sauce
  • Ontop of the sauce, add the slices of mozzarella, then top with the spinach
  • Add the remaining pasta ontop of the spinach, layer the remaining sauce, then top with Parmesan cheese
  • Cover with foil then bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes
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