Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Gluten Free Lasagna Soup

When I think of the ultimate comfort food, Italian cuisine always comes first to mind. I am constantly craving pasta, pizza, caprese, meatballs and so on. Toward the top of that list is lasagna! Having Celiac does not allow me the opportunity to pop over to my favorite trattoria to get a slice of the delicious cheesy, meaty saucy Jenga-like pasta. In fact, I haven't had lasagna at all since begin diagnosed. :(

When I saw this recipe for lasagna soup I could not wait to get in the kitchen and adapt it to my gluten free needs.  It so deliciously creamy and cheesy. The perfect comfort soup for yet another Polar Vortex this winter.

This recipe makes about 8 servings so I was able to set some aside in the freezer to enjoy later. I can't wait!

8 oz pasta of choice, I used gluten free small seashell
1 tbsp olive oil
1 lb Italian sausage, casing removed
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 tbsp tomato paste
6 cups chicken broth
1 28-oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes
2 bay leaves
salt and black pepper, to taste
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chiffonade

For the ricotta mixture
8 oz ricotta
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
salt and black pepper, to taste

1) Cook pasta according to package instructions.
2) Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine ricotta, Parmesan, salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.
3) Once the ricotta mixture is complete, heat olive oil in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium high heat. Add Italian sausage to the skillet and cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes, making sure to crumble the sausage as it cooks; drain excess fat. Add garlic, onion, oregano and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions have become translucent, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in tomato paste until well combined, about 1 minute.
4) Stir in chicken broth, diced tomatoes and bay leaves; season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until slightly thickened, about 30 minutes. Stir in pasta.
5) Serve with a heaping spoonful of the ricotta mixture then with mozzarella and basil as you please.

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