I love Zucchini, Part 2

 
 
Our family REALLY likes this recipe, it's yet another reason to love zucchini.  And don't omit the fennel, this spice was never a part of my cabinet until I tried this recipe.  Now fennel goes into so many of the meals I serve my family.  It's worth adding to your spice collection!
 

Layered Italian Zucchini Casserole
 
4 servings - 1 1/2 cups each
 
 
1/2 pound lean ground beef, browned and drained
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
4 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced thin
1/2 teaspoon olive oil
8 ounces no-added-salt tomato sauce
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon fennel
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
2 ounces part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded
2/3 cup nonfat cottage cheese
4 small zucchini, peeled and sliced thin lengthwise
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
nonstick cooking spray
 
 
1.  Preheat oven to 375.
 
 
2.  In a medium skillet, brown meat; drain well.  In same skillet, saute chopped onion, pepper, and mushrooms in olive oil until soft.  Stir in drained meat, tomato sauce, garlic powder, fennel, pepper, basil, and oregano.
 
 
3.  In a small mixing bowl, combine mozzarella cheese and cottage cheese.
 

4. Spray an 11" x 7" casserole dish with cooking spray.  Layer meat sauce, zucchini, and cheese mixture twice.  Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the last meat layer.  Bake in the oven for 45 minutes.  This casserole can be assembled and refrigerated or frozen for later baking.

 

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