I remember the first time I had raw lasagna. It was at Pure Food & Wine in New York City, and it was an absolute explosion of flavors I had never before experienced. It was incredibly decadent—a rich tower of housemade nut cheese, basil pesto, tomato marinara, paper-thin vegetable slices, and basil-infused olive oil. So I decided to create my own version and have it in my back pocket when I need something to dazzle dinner guests. I like to serve this lasagna with a fabulous salad and a showstopping dessert (I suggest this raspberry chocolate cheesecake or chocolate-mint ice cream), and you’ve got yourself a gourmet dinner party.
What you need:
For the macadamia nut ricotta:
- 1 cup raw macadamia nuts
- ½ cup water
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
For the tomato pesto:
- ¼ cup dehydrated sun-dried tomatoes
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves
- 2 tablespoons raw walnuts
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoons water
For the lasagna:
- 1 zucchini
- 1 heirloom tomato, thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon flaky sea salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- Fresh basil leaves (for garnish)
What you do:
- For the ricotta, into a high-speed blender, combine all ricotta ingredients until smooth. Transfer to a small bowl, and set aside.
- For the pesto, wipe blender clean, and add all pesto ingredients. Pulse a few times until consistency of pesto, and set aside
- For the lasagna, cut zucchini lengthwise into thin slices and then cut those slices in half, widthwise.
- To assemble lasagna, onto a plate, place 1 zucchini slice. Layer with pesto, ricotta, and a tomato slice. Add another zucchini slice and layer again with pesto, ricotta, and a tomato slice. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and basil. Repeat on three other plates.
- >> To create elegant, paper-thin slices of zucchini, use a mandoline! I recommend this one.
>> Double the ricotta recipe and use the leftover on pasta, salads, or as a crostini spread.
>> Great tomatoes are critical for this recipe. I love sweet, heirloom varieties in the summer and fall!