I love lasagna. One of my absolute favorite foods. Growing up my mom made a helluva lasagna. It was one of those meals that I always looked forward to mom making.
Such a versatile course. Countless fillings and ingredients to use. Here, I went completely meatless. My wife is now a proud vegetarian, so I've had to expand my repertorie when it comes to different veggie combinations.
Butternut Squash flesh is creamy and sweet. A joy to cook with. It's peak season runs from early fall through the balance of winter, so I wanted to squeeze it in one last time. Pinch of cinnamon really takes this to another level.
Shiitake Mushrooms are a delicacy the world over. I found some lovely fresh shiitake mushroom at my local organic market. They provide the lasagna with a meaty mouthfeel, sure to satisfy the carnivore in your family opposed to anything vegeterian.
Leeks are a staple of LC cuisine. Love them. Indispensable in my opinion. Cut into about 1/4 inch rings they add a sweet onion punch.
Cauliflower puree with milk, onion, butter, and grated nutmeg is the sauce for the lasagna.
Organic Gouda and Organic Gruyere were the cheeses used.
Panko Breadcrumbs, fresh minced chervil, and fresh minced marjoram provide the icing on the cake. Or the topping of the lasagna.
Due to my abject laziness, I did not make my own pasta. Barilla Oven Ready Lasagna is a readily available product that will cut two steps in the kitchen for you, making and boiling the pasta.
Shiitake Mushroom, Butternut Squash & Leek Lasagna
For the Butternut Squash:
1 large butternut squash
Preheat the oven to 375 F. Cut the squash in half. Scoop out the seeds. Season with cane sugar and cinnamon. Lay down on a baking sheet cut side down. Cook for 1 hour. Allow to cool.
Scoop out the flesh into a food processor. Add just enough half-and-half. You want a nice puree consistency. Season with a pinch of cane sugar and ground cinnamon. Process until smooth.
For the Cauliflower Puree:
1 head of cauliflower
3 tbs unsalted butter
1 white onion - small chop
2 garlic cloves - minced
In a stockpot, heat the safflower oil over medium-high heat. Add the butter, once the butter foams, add the onion. Add the cauliflower and garlic to the pot. Cook for 7 minutes. Pour enough milk to cover the cauliflower. Grate nutmeg to taste. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until the cauliflower is soft. Using an immersion blender puree until smooth.
For the Shiitake Mushrooms & Leeks:
Fresh shiitake mushrooms - sliced
3 Leeks - white and light green parts only - cut into 1/4 inch rounds
2 shallot - minced
In a saute pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Saute the shallots, mushrooms and leeks until nicely browned. Season with salt and pepper. Do not overcook.
Fresh herbs minced
Gouda - shredded
Gruyere - grated
Lasagna Layers- pasta, butternut squash, shiitake mushrooms, leeks, gruyere, rosemary.
Once the layers are built cover with cauliflower puree, shredded gouda, panko breadcrumbs, chervil and marjoram.
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Cover lasagna dish with aluminum foil. Bake for 40 minutes. Remove the foil. Cook for a further 10 minutes to finish to top.
That's it for now...till we exchange a few words again...Peace!