So there are two general approaches to zucchini cannelloni. One involves using actual thin sliced zucchini instead of noodles (a great gluten free choice, and totally possible with the large zucchini we've got hanging around as they'd make great wide "pasta" sheets). The other is to put zucchini *in* the cannelloni. I went for the latter.
I used this recipe as a guideline and used Heidi's recipe for tomato sauce from her Thousand Layer Lasagne as it is a great light, fresh sauce with a hint of lemon in it which I thought would go well with the lighter flavoured cannelloni filling. Like most of my baked pasta recipes I made a whole whack of this so that some portions could be frozen. I ended up with 12 individual cannelloni and divided that into 3 meals of 4 cannelloni each, to be served with a big fresh salad.
Homemade Zucchini & Ricotta Cannelloni
1 recipe of tomato sauce from here (or your personal fave)
1 package (1 lb) of fresh lasagne sheets
500g of ricotta
1 large zucchini grated, salted and drained
2 cloves of garlic
handful of chard leaves washed and chopped (I also have an abundance of these in my yard, not necessary but a nice addition)
one bunch of fresh basil sliced (reserve about 2 tbsp)
zest of half a lemon
olive oil to saute with
breadcrumbs (1 cup)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 crushed clove of garlic
1/4 cup of pinenuts
reserved freshly chopped basil from above
Make your tomato sauce, defrost some or use your favourite pre-made sauce. You'll need about 3 cups of it.
Heat the olive oil and saute your garlic with a pinch of salt. When it becomes aromatic add the grated zucchini and saute until it starts to soften. You don't want to over cook it as it will still bake for a while. Add the chard just before it is done and saute to wilt. Let cool a bit.
Empty your ricotta container into a bowl, add the sauted veggies, fresh basil (reserving a bit for a topping), lemon zest and a pinch of salt and a few good grinds of fresh pepper. Stir to combine.
Cut your lasagne sheets in half down the middle (not long ways but to make two smaller rectangles/almost squares out of the one long sheet). Take your baking pan (a lasagne pan works well or I used three smaller pyrex baking pans to freeze) and cover the bottom with sauce. Take a lasagne square and add filling along one side and roll into a tube shape. Place in the pan. Keep doing this until you're done. Add the remaining sauce on top to cover.
Mix the breadcrumbs, crushed garlic, salt, some pepper, pinenuts and the fresh basil with about 2 tbsp olive oil (more if necessary). Spread on top of your cannelloni pan.
Cover the pan with foil and bake at 350 for between 35-45 minutes. Remove the foil top and let the breadcrumbs brown for another 5-10 minutes (depending on how hot your oven is).