So, I had friends over for dinner last night and I wanted to make them something special, while for myself, staying within the Protein Vegetable rules. I decided to make them Baked Ziti and for myself, Baked “Ziti”. Well, there was no ziti in my recipe but I cooked some cauliflower and made myself a delicious version while they ate the real thing. I’m going to include instructions for both in case you find yourself wanting to do the same thing.
1 lb ground sirloin
3 chicken Italian sausages, casings removed
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 28 oz can tomato puree
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
1 t basil
1 t oregano
2 T parsley
1 1/2 cups fat free ricotta cheese or cottage cheese (or a mixture of both)
1 cup fat free or skim mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
2 cups cauliflower florets
3/4 lb whole grain ziti, (like Barilla)
salt and pepper (red pepper flakes if you like)
Boil the cauliflower in some salted water until al dente, about 3 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and rough chop it. Cook the noodles in the boiling water as instructed on the box, drain and set aside. In a skillet, brown the sirloin, sausage and onion until cooked through, about 6-7 minutes, adding the garlic in the last minute. Drain well and return to the skillet. Add the tomatoes, basil, oregano and parsley. Heat for 15 minutes and season with salt and pepper.
ASSEMBLY: Spray a large casserole and a small casserole with cooking spray. Spread two tablespoons of sauce on the bottom of the large, and one on the bottom of the smaller one. Spread half the noodles in the large and half the cauliflower in the small on top of the sauce. Dot both with half of the ricotta or cottage cheese. Top with half the mozzarella. Cover with half the sauce. Repeat the noodles, cheeses and sauce layers and top with the Parmesan. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes, or until bubbly.
You enjoy your Dukan-friendly version while the rest of the family loves you for cooking them pasta!!