Gluten-Free Butternut Squash and Sage Lasagna

This year, my family and I made the same dishes for Thanksgiving and Christmas because we loved them so much at Thanksgiving! Using the amazing Cappello’s gluten-free lasagna sheets, we made Gluten-Free Butternut Squash and Sage Lasagna and Gluten-Free Meat Lasagna.  While neither were low-FODMAP given the heavy dose of dairy, I was able to manage alright with just a small piece given how heavy they were anyway.

On our trip to California for Thanksgiving, we had a great time in Santa Barbara – biking, visiting outdoor museums with ocean views…AAhh, what a wonderful life in California!  (I also note with sadness all of the devastation of the wildfires just weeks after our visit 🙁 ).

MOXI, Wolf Museum in Santa Barbara
MOXI, Wolf Museum in Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara biking
Santa Barbara biking

Gluten-Free Roasted Butternut Squash and Sage Lasagna


1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch squares

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1/2 lb fresh mozzarella cheese, grated (~2 cups)

1 lb ricotta cheese

1 1/4 cups freshly grated parmesan cheese

1/2 cup heavy cream

1 1/4 cups vegetable stock (if you can find a brand that does not have onion and garlic that is best)

2 tbsp butter

2 large egg yolks

1/3 cup fresh sage leaves, coarsely chopped

Freshly grated nutmeg

Salt and pepper for seasoning

Gluten-free lasagna noodles (~1/2 pound)


Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss squash, olive oil, garlic and 1 teaspoon salt and pepper on a baking sheet
Bake until light gold and tender, 25 to 30 minutes.  Flip through cooking as needed.  Discard garlic
Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees and grease a 9 cup baking dish
Combine ricotta, cream, egg yolks, mozzarella, and a pinch of nutmeg in a medium bowl. Season with salt
Melt butter in a small frying pan over medium-high heat. Add sage and cook until light gold and crispy at the edges, watching to ensure it does not burn.  This should take 3 – 4 minutes
Place squash in a medium bowl, and mash 1/2 of it with the back of a wooden spoon, leaving the other 1/2 in whole pieces. Gently stir in sage-butter mixture and vegetable stock. Season with salt and pepper
Spread 3/4 cup of ricotta mixture in baking dish. Top with a layer of noodles. Spread 1/2 of the butternut squash mixture over noodles. Top with a layer of noodles. Spread 1 cup of ricotta mixture over noodles. Repeat layering once more (noodles, squash, noodles, ricotta). Sprinkle Parmesan over ricotta mixture
Place baking dish on a baking sheet, and bake until cheese is golden and bubbling, 30 to 35 minutes. Let stand for 15 minutes before slicing and serving

Blue Hair, Don’t Care – March 2, 2017

blue hair, dont careWe had another great trip in California this school break.  Matt’s been wanting to “dye” his hair blue for some time, so I thought the few days at the beach would be a fun time for blue hair (using chalk products only! This one seemed to be the safest for kids!)

We took a trip over to Huntington Beach to walk one of the longest piers on the west coast – 1,850 feet long!  We were standing over where the surfers were catching their best waves.

Huntington Beach Pier

Huntington Beach, CA

We also did a lot of cooking!  Be on the lookout for “Radishes and Carrots 3 Ways” in one of my next posts.  We took on the challenge of roasted, raw and slaw versions of radishes and carrots – two of my favorites 🙂

Here we have a more time consuming recipe than I’m used to, but it is worth the effort for the delicious lasagna at the end, loaded with veggies!


Low-FODMAP No Noodle Vegetable Lasagna


2 medium-sized squash

1 lb. ground beef

1 28 oz. can of diced tomatoes

2 cups raw spinach (roughly 2 large handfuls)

1 16 oz. container of ricotta

8 oz. shredded mozzarella

8 oz. shredded parmesan

2 fresh basil leaves

2 tsp. dried oregano

1 tbsp. salt

1 1/2 tsp. black pepper

1/4 cup red wine

1 egg


Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a 9×13 baking pan

Slice zucchini lengthwise into very thin pieces, using the thinnest setting on a mandoline or a sharp knife (I use this one)

Sprinkle the zucchini slices with salt and set in a colander to drain in the sink

Begin preparing the meat sauce by combining the ground beef, salt and black pepper in a deep skillet over medium high heat until meat is browned.  Stir in the diced tomatoes, basil, oregano and wine.  Bring the sauce to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the sauce has thickened and developed in flavor.  Stir frequently

While the sauce is cooking, stir together the egg and ricotta in a medium bowl until well combined

When all ingredients are prepped, begin the process of making the lasagna

Spread 1/2 the meat sauce on the bottom of the prepared baking pan.  Layer 1/2 of the zucchini slices, 1/2 the ricotta mixture, all the spinach and then half of the mozzarella.  Repeat by layering the remaining meat sauce, zucchini slices, ricotta mixture and mozzarella.  Spread the parmesan cheese over the top and cover with foil

Bake for 45 minutes.  Remove the foil and bake for an additional 15 minutes.  Let stand for 5 – 10 minutes to allow the lasagna to settle before serving

Enjoy 🙂

No-Noodle Vegetable Lasagna



Taking it easy – February 20, 2017

I love escaping the pace of NYC every now and then. The non-stop nature of the city keeps the cycle of have more, do more, be more constantly flowing. Southern California allows a step away from that pace. A calm retreat into beautiful things – including the nicest mall I’ve ever visited. There was even a Snoopy with a gold crown on his head!

Another great perk of our visits is getting to see my sister’s band perform. We haven’t seen them since July, and they’ve gone into high gear since then and are absolutely killing it! Check out Cillian’s Bridge website.





Matt joining the band 🙂



As it relates to food, trying new things is a way of taking it easy for me.  Especially when I have access to a kitchen double the size of mine 🙂

Blistered Shishito Peppers

Serves 2 as appetizer


1/2 lb. of shishito peppers – about 15 – 20 peppers

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 tbsp. coarse ground sea salt

Juice of half a lemon


Heat olive oil in a wok or deep frying pan (the oil may splash as the peppers are cooking)

Add peppers and cook for 3 – 5 minutes per side or until the peppers have softened and started to blister

Remove from heat and toss with lemon juice and salt

Serve while hot


California Surprise – February 18, 2017

We traveled to Southern California on our break from school and work to relax in the warm, sunny weather with my sister. Instead we joined her for the worst storm in at least 6 years, but possibly going back to 2004! We are certainly making the most of it – cooking, shopping, creating art projects.  Matt and my sister created a planet of vegetable “good guys” and “bad guys” followed by a planet of dairy characters while we lunched at the most amazing gluten-free meal I’ve had in ages at True Food Kitchen.

Gluten-free Hummus, Gluten-free PitaAs we didn’t want to leave the house in the storm again, we made boiled lobster tail and kale and quinoa on the side for dinner.  I’ll share both recipes below. The lobster tail was a new one for us, so we had to experiment a bit; it turned out great!

Boiled lobster tail

Boiled Lobster Tail

Serves 2


2 lobster tails, frozen

6 cups of water

1 tsp. salt

1/4 cup butter

Juice of 1 lemon


Bring the water to a boil, adding salt at the start

Add butter and lemon to the water as it starts to boil

Place frozen lobster tails in the water and cook for 10 – 12 minutes, until the lobster meat is whitening

Place lobster tails on a cutting board and cut down the center to peel off the shell

Serve with extra butter for dipping on the side if desired

Low-FODMAP Kale and Quinoa Side Dish

Serves 2 – 4


1 bunch of kale, chopped

1 cup quinoa

1 1/2 cups chicken broth (always confirm this does not contain onion and garlic)

~10 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

1 egg

1/4 cup parmesan cheese

1 tsp. butter

1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

2 tsp. salt


Rinse quinoa and place in rice cooker with chicken stock and 1 tsp. of salt

Once the quinoa has been cooking for 10 minutes or so, add the butter and olive oil to a frying pan heating on medium heat

Add cherry tomatoes and 1 tsp. of salt to the frying pan

Add the kale to the frying pan and cook until the kale is softened and has halved in size in the pan

Crack an egg in the frying pan and stir until cooked into the mix

Stir in the quinoa and parmesan cheese

  kale, quinoa and egg

Serve as a side dish or on its own for a nice weekday lunch!


Experimenting on Vacation – February 18, 2016

I will try not to rub it in too much how wonderful our time in sunny, warm California was – escaping the freezing temps of NYC, a few days of work and really getting to unplug and have some laughs! 🙂  But that said, it was an unbeatable vacation, and I am so grateful for it.



One of the things my sister and I love to do together is cook, and sometimes get a bit adventurous with it.  This time we attempted some homemade gluten free pasta, and it turned out really amazing.  We served it carbonara style with some heavy cream, kale and bacon.  Below is the recipe we used for the pasta.

Gluten-free Pasta


  • 3 cups gluten-free flour (I use Bob’s 1:1)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 eggs plus 2 yolks
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Cornmeal, for dusting


Combine the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl.  Create a well in the center of the bowl and add 3 whole eggs, 2 yolks and 1 tbsp olive oil to the well and beat with a fork.  Gradually drag in the flour from the outside in a circular motion and combine with your hand.  As you are mixing, add the water gradually and as needed.  Continue to combine until all flour forms into a ball.  Knead and fold the dough until elastic and smooth.  Rub 1 tbsp of olive oil on the surface and wrap the dough in plastic wrap.  Let rest for about 30 minutes.

Divide the dough into four portions, and cover the sections you are currently not using.  Form the dough into a rectangle and roll out with a rolling pin until it is of desired thickness (the pasta will not expand much so whatever thickness you see pre-cooking will be the final size), using cornmeal to dust as needed.  Cut the rectangle into fettuccine sized pieces, or as small as you like (we cut into roughly 1×3 in. rectangles).

Cook pasta in boiling water for 4 – 5 minutes.  Drain and serve with desired sauce.  Below is a view of the carbonara style dish we made.

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