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Zucchini & Tomato Lasagna Rolls

Updated on February 25, 2016
Source

Lasagna rolls with zucchini, tomatoes and cheese

Four strips of lasagna, one poor zucchini, a little cheese and an onion - could I make dinner for both of us with these? That was the problem I was faced with. Wow.

Thanks to a can of chopped tomatoes, some garlic and fresh basil from the garden, the answer was yes. I love the challenge of creating interesting meat-free recipes with the ingredients to hand and often, they become firm favorites and I make them time after time.

The small amount of pasta wasn't enough to create a proper lasagna of course but by rolling the other ingredients inside the cooked lasagna strips, this became quite a hearty meal served with some French bread.

I prefer recipes that are quick to prepare because I'm always so busy and he's always so hungry!

These are the items I used

Source

To serve two people

  • 4 strips lasagna
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • Fresh basil
  • Cheese - I used brie to go inside the rolls and cheddar for the topping
  • A little olive oil

Preparation

Source

PASTA

Put a large pan on a high heat and three-quarters fill it with water and bring to the boil. My kettle boils water faster than the stove top does so I boil the water in there and then pour it into the pan. Fold the pasta slices into the boiling water. Turn the heat down slightly but keep the water at a rolling boil to keep the pasta moving so that it doesn't stick. The packet will tell you how long you need to boil the pasta.

ZUCCHINI

The zucchini is then sliced along its length after being topped and tailed and thoroughly washed. Heat the oil in a skillet / frying pan and when it's warmed through, add the zucchini slices. Watch these carefully and turn them when necessary. You want the zucchini slices to be softened and if they become a little browned, that's fine too. Somehow this adds to the flavor.

ONIONS & GARLIC

Remove the zucchini from the pan and place in a lined sieve (see below). Keep the pan on the heat and add the chopped onion. Stir occasionally and after a few minutes add the chopped garlic. When the onion is soft, add the contents of the can of tomatoes, sauce and all. Simmer this gently. There are two other things you can do at this stage - season with salt and pepper (I just use pepper) and, if you have it, pour in a little red wine. If you'll be using the regular oven preheat to 400°.

Drain

Cooked zucchini for lasagna rolls
Cooked zucchini for lasagna rolls | Source

DRAIN THE ZUCCHINI & PASTA

Place paper towel in a sieve and add the cooked zucchini slices. The paper will absorb the oil. Add another sheet of paper towel on top and pat gently. This too will absorb the oil. Still in the paper, put the zucchini aside while you strain the pasta which should now be perfectly cooked al dente Run the pasta under running cold water and then lay the sheets out on a chopping board or other clean surface.

Assemble the rolls

Assemble the zucchini lasagna rolls
Assemble the zucchini lasagna rolls | Source

MAKE THE ROLLS

With the pasta strips flat on a work surface, add the zucchini slices. Add dabs of cheese (brie in this case) and fresh basil leaves. Of course, this is very open to experimentation. You could use other herbs or vegetables. I'm intend to try fresh baby spinach leaves in place of the basil. (When my basil plant gives up the ghost, as they always seem to. Does anyone have tips for keeping then alive?).

TOMATO SAUCE

With a spoon, add some liquid from the sauce to an ovenproof dish. You only need enough to cover the bottom.

Roll up!

Preparing lasagna rolls
Preparing lasagna rolls | Source

ROLL THE PASTA

Now just roll up each pasta strip and place in the oven-proof dish on top of the tomato sauce liquid. Pour the remaining tomato sauce on top and put into the oven.

CHEESE

Grate the remaining cheese. Remove the dish from the oven, sprinkle the cheese over the rolls and bake until the cheese is becoming golden. You can use the regular oven or a toaster or halogen oven if you prefer.

Serve

Lasagna roll ups
Lasagna roll ups | Source

SERVE THE LASAGNA ROLLS

Plate the rolls and serve with the tomatoes and fresh basil leaves. This is good with a simple side salad and lovely bread from a French stick. The bread should be used to mop up the delicious tomato sauce!

Further reading

Although I wouldn't claim that these lasagna vegetable roll ups are authentically Italian by any means, the inspiration certainly is. One of the wonderful features of Italian cooking, especially for vegetarians, is that many of the greatest Italian dishes come from peasant communities where money (hence meat and fish) is scarce. This means that traditionally, Italian recipes make the most of local produce - in other words local vegetables and cheese. There are some excellent recipe books that particularly feature Italian vegetarian cooking.

Italian wall art for your kitchen

Is Italian cooking the most popular in America? I was going to say England too where it's amazingly popular but Indian food supersedes it. But in America, or at least where I live, Italian restaurants are always packed and it can be hard to get a table. We solve this problem by often eating Italian-inspired dishes at home (which saves a lot of money) and a little inexpensive Italian style wall art, a bottle (or two) of red wine and a candle in a Chianti bottle quickly gives us the same atmosphere!

Lasagna or lasagne? Courgette or zucchini?

When I first came to live in the USA from England, there were many linguistic and spelling challenges. The linguistic ones were tricky because the area I come from in England has its own heavy dialect and although my two home countries both speak English, I sometimes felt that I was talking a foreign language. Spelling was tricky too and one example was lasagna.

You see, I was accustomed to lasagne. Yes, it's only the difference of one letter but it's the sort of pedantic detail my mind would become fixated with. It turns out that lasagna in Italian refers to a single strand of the pasta and lasagne is the plural. (A little like pizza and pizze). Even the spellchecker on my American computer doesn't accept lasagne as being a valid word.

And then there was the whole zucchini / courgette debaclé. I had convinced myself that for some bizarre reason, courgettes didn't exist in the States. Until I realized that they were going under the disguise of zucchini.

Thank goodness that a tomato is a tomato in both countries ... except my pronunciation is completely different. Oh dear.

Photography credits

All photographs taken on an iPhone in my kitchen during the preparation of this meat-free lasagna dish.

© 2013 Jackie Jackson

What do you think?

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    • Scindhia H profile image

      Scindhia 2 years ago from Chennai

      Looks yummy!

    • BuckHawkcenter profile image

      BuckHawkcenter 2 years ago

      Looking for something to make for dinner tonight and here it came. Just perfect.

    • profile image

      nuxa76 2 years ago

      so simple yet so good

    • amandascloset0 profile image

      amandascloset0 2 years ago

      I love Zucchini and tomatoes are my favorite food on the planet. This is a great looking combination. I can't wait to try it.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 2 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @ecogranny: That's a good way of looking at it - thanks! I'm going to persevere with the basil. I probably won't have much luck but the flavour is worth the attempt.

    • ecogranny profile image

      Kathryn Grace 2 years ago from San Francisco

      Fabulous recipe! What an innovative way to pull together a few ingredients from the pantry and make a gourmet meal.As for the basil, in the garden it needs plenty of good rich soil and other plants around it to give it cooling shade during the hottest part of the day but not so much that it hasn't plenty of sun exposure the rest of the time. I haven't enough sun in my north facing windows to keep a basil plant alive, so I have no experience with the indoor kind.At my house, I have to think of potted herbs as a slightly longer-lasting, fresher version of cut herbs, alas.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 2 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Elsie Hagley: Thank you for letting me know about National Cheese Month - a great excuse to eat my favourite food :)

    • Carol Houle profile image

      Carol Houle 3 years ago from Montreal

      I will try this, but not with Brie. Perhaps with Parmesan flavored bechamel sauce.

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 2 years ago from New Zealand

      As it's National Cheese Month I think this recipe will go down well. Beautiful photos.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Ibidii: Thank you! It's very good.

    • profile image

      Ibidii 3 years ago

      Looks really good! I cannot wait until my daughter cooks this for us! :)

    • Radgrl profile image

      Radgrl 3 years ago

      I love the presentation. The pictures got my attention and made the recipe look easier.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Fiorenza: Recipes have to be easy for me :)

    • Fiorenza profile image

      Fiorenza 3 years ago from UK

      Looks scrummy and easy to do which is even better!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Beadsnresin: What a great idea! I'm going to try it this week.

    • PeacefulHeather profile image

      PeacefulHeather 3 years ago

      Sounds awesome! Not too sure about the brie though. I love that kind of cheese, but no one else in my family does. I might try fresh mozzarella on the inside and then a mozzarella/Parmesan mix on the outside. I am also really intrigued about the idea of the spinach. That sounds great!

    • Beadsnresin profile image

      Beadsnresin 3 years ago

      Thanks, these look really good and different!! Have you ever tried them with eggplant? Could be like a Parmigiana roll lolbtw - I'm a lasagne/zucchini kinda gal lol

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @PeacefulHeather: That's the wonderful thing - it's so adaptable :)

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @DeborahDian: It is. It's even cold in Florida right now!

    • DeborahDian profile image

      Deborah Carr 3 years ago from Orange County, California

      This sounds like a great winter meal ... which I could really enjoy right about now! :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Don't you just love swirling chunks of bread around in a good sauce and then chomping down on it? That's what I call good eatin'. I love zucchini, tomatoes and lasagna but I'd have to get a substitute for the basil. And you're absolutely right about the kettle getting water hotter, quicker. Why can't I ever remember that when I'm cooking?Great photos, great lens - thanks for sharing.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Merrci: Thank you - enjoy!

    • Merrci profile image

      Merry Citarella 3 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

      Will have to give this a try. Looks delicious, especially if I use the spinach. Your photos make it look very appetizing!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Adventuretravels: Hope you enjoy it!

    • Adventuretravels profile image

      Giovanna Sanguinetti 3 years ago from London UK

      Here you go again making me hungry! I think it's your wonderful photos. I'll give this tasty recipe a try sooner rather than later. Thanks

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      MakeHairBows 3 years ago

      It looks divine, thanks for sharing...

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @federico-biuso: Interesting - thank you!

    • federico-biuso profile image

      federico-biuso 3 years ago

      Good recipe!!! By the way, in Italy, where lasagna/e comes from, we use "lasagnA" or "lasagnE" without discrimination :)))

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 3 years ago

      Totally yum!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @sousababy: Thank you - it's very tasty :)

    • sousababy profile image

      sousababy 3 years ago

      Oh, I always seem to be left with 4 lone lasagna noodles. Now I know how to use them up. Brilliant idea.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @DawnRae64: It's easy and tasty.I promise :)

    • DawnRae64 profile image

      Dawn 3 years ago from Maryland, USA

      Like! And it seems like something i could actually do without ruining. :)

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @anonymous: Please do - it's good :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Great looking recipe! Will try this one....:)

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Mamabyrd: I hope you do - it's delicious very easy make. (And inexpensive - I like that particularly!)

    • Mamabyrd profile image

      Mamabyrd 3 years ago

      These look delicious and healthy. I still have a few zucchini left from my garden that I need to use up so I may have to give this lasagna a try.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @emma_07: It's very tasty indeed :)

    • profile image

      emma_07 3 years ago

      Simply Delicious !!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @poutine: It certainly is :)

    • profile image

      poutine 3 years ago

      Sounds really good

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @TwilightLurker: If I can make it, anyone can :)

    • TwilightLurker profile image

      TwilightLurker 3 years ago

      What a tasty idea! As someone that loves lasagna, I really want to give this a try to thanks to how clearly it's all outlined here and also thanks to the marvelous photos, even someone like me should be able to make and enjoy this dish. Terrific!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @SusanDeppner: I hope you do, Susan, it's good.Thanks for dropping by!

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 3 years ago from Arkansas USA

      Wow, does this sound ever-so seasonably delicious! Must try!

    • Stephanie36 profile image

      Stephanie 3 years ago from Canada

      This looks so good! I'm not sure I'm motivated enough to make pasta rather than just get store bought, but I would love to try this if I do become motivated.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @othellos: Thank you so much!

    • profile image

      othellos 3 years ago

      Very innovative idea to use the best Italian ingredients to make a vegie dish. Congratulations:=)

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @angelatvs: Enjoy!

    • aboutkitchenrev profile image

      aboutkitchenrev 3 years ago

      Hi I've never tried that sort of recipe. But Wow - that looks delicious...going to go out and make it this weekend. Have a great day...

    • profile image

      angelatvs 3 years ago

      Fabulous idea! Can't wait to try this.

    • profile image

      phamdiep 3 years ago

      I'm hungry up

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @paynui: Oh, I wish we had!

    • profile image

      paynui 3 years ago

      Every summer we have lots growing in the veg patch.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @JohnTannahill: Haha - thanks fo rthe chuckle, John :)

    • JohnTannahill profile image

      John Tannahill 3 years ago from Somewhere in England

      See I thought a zucchini was a two piece swimsuit worn by animals.Seriously, I often find myself in a similar situation but there's usually a bit of chorizo involved. Did I just swear in church?

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Hey, that looks like a great idea! Will have to try that. Thanks

    • profile image

      LUMOSE 3 years ago

      Great idea for a quick lunch.

    • profile image

      soaringsis 3 years ago

      What a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

    • trying2Bhealthy profile image

      trying2Bhealthy 3 years ago

      Looks good. Worth a try. You are most creative!

    • profile image

      ChristyZ 3 years ago

      This looks like a great recipe, I know my family would like this one and it looks pretty easy too!

    • Unlimited11-11 profile image

      Tom McHugh 3 years ago from Lake Champlain, Vermont, USA

      Looks great. I can't wait to try it.

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 3 years ago

      Looks delicious and fast!

    • LeslieMirror profile image

      LeslieMirror 3 years ago

      Looks promisingly tasty. Will try, definitely. In summer by hot weather, I hate eating meat.

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Excellent, yummy recipe!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @number43: It's very good :)

    • savateuse profile image

      savateuse 3 years ago

      What a great idea !

    • hessa johnson profile image

      hessa johnson 3 years ago

      A great way to use up my zucchini! Thank you!

    • profile image

      yourlocalpt 3 years ago

      How i love lasagna. it taste good. one of my favorite food

    • number43 profile image

      number43 3 years ago

      That looks really good:)

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @wiseriverman: Maybe tomorrow?

    • wiseriverman profile image

      wiseriverman 3 years ago

      I wish I could have that for lunch today but can't. :(

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @simple-mom: That would be a great variation.

    • profile image

      leobond 3 years ago

      good!

    • simple-mom profile image

      Christine V 3 years ago from Philippines

      This looks delicious. I would love to try this. My daughter likes eggplant; perhaps I can use it instead of the zucchini.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @ghoststorylover: Ooops!

    • ghoststorylover profile image

      ghoststorylover 3 years ago

      I think you're making me hungry!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Scarlettohairy: Spinach is a great idea - thanks!

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 3 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      Yum! I'm not a big fan of squash of any kind but I think I'll try making these with spinach. What a great new recipe to try!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @k4shmir: Thanks for dropping by!

    • k4shmir profile image

      k4shmir 3 years ago

      enjoy reading your lens. thanks for sharing

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @HappyTom LM: Thank you - enjoy!

    • HappyTom LM profile image

      Tom Christen 3 years ago from Switzerland/Ecuador

      It looks really yummy! Thank you very much for the great idea, I will do that soon...

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @SBRTechnologies1: Thank you - they certainly are good :)

    • SBRTechnologies1 profile image

      SBRTechnologies1 3 years ago

      Those lasagna rolls look unbelievly delicious.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @DreyaB: I sometimes think that French is easier than American :)

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Susan Zutautas: Thank you - they are very tasty and easy to make!

    • DreyaB profile image

      DreyaB 3 years ago from France

      That sounds very tasty. I'm a Brit in France so I know what you mean with some of the lingo troubles! :)

    • Susan Zutautas profile image

      Susan Zutautas 3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Your lasagna rolls look delicious!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Legenden: Thanks for dropping by!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @smine27: Thanks!

    • Legenden profile image

      Legenden 3 years ago

      Thanks, this is great :D

    • smine27 profile image

      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      Great recipe! Thanks for sharing!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Rhonda Lytle: That's lovely of you - thank you!

    • Rhonda Lytle profile image

      Rhonda Lytle 3 years ago from Deep in the heart of Dixie

      Oh, man, now I'm starving. That looks better than the Italian I had at the restaurant.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Mary Crowther: Thanks - let me know if you try it :)

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @mina009: Thank you!

    • Mary Crowther profile image

      Mary Crowther 3 years ago from Havre de Grace

      Looks so tasty!

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      mina009 3 years ago

      Lovely recipe, great lens!

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @tammywilliams09: You'll enjoy this :) It's very easy and quick to make too.

    • tammywilliams09 profile image

      tammywilliams09 3 years ago

      Great and simple recipe. I love tomatoes and zucchinis.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @acreativethinker: Do let me know how it goes - I'm sure you'll enjoy it!

    • profile image

      acreativethinker 3 years ago

      This zucchini lasagna recipe looks so delicious! I will have to try it out in my toaster oven. Thanksfor sharing. Take care :)

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @yania227: Enjoy!

    • yania227 profile image

      yania227 3 years ago

      Great recipe! I will try this.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Erin Mellor: Thank you - I hope you'll enjoy these, they are tasty!

    • Erin Mellor profile image

      Erin Mellor 3 years ago from Europe

      With zucchini season just around the corner I'm always looking for more recipes to use them up.

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      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @feelinggoodholistics: Enjoy!

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      feelinggoodholistics 3 years ago

      I love rolled up food, I'll have to try these.

    • BritFlorida profile image
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      Jackie Jackson 4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @TransplantedSoul: Thank you! I sometimes wonder if I could cook at all if it wasn't from my basil plants.

    • TransplantedSoul profile image

      TransplantedSoul 4 years ago

      Yummy - I love fresh basil! This looks like a must-try recipe.

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