It looks like I am knee deep in comfort food recipes. Can’t blame me! There is something about the change in the season that makes me want to eat warm, comforting food. I am sure I am not alone. I really enjoy lasagna, but I usually reserve it for a Sunday afternoon cooking session. And in our place, there is always a cooking marathon on Sunday nights. Usually we are preparing two separate batches of lunches for the week as well as dinner for that night, so lasagna is perfect to make at that sort of time.
I won’t pretend that this lasagna is a quick and easy meal but it is certainly delicious and will last pretty much all week long (depending on the composition of your household of course). For us, it served as two dinners (for two) and 4 lunches (for one) and I think that it is worth the effort. Of course, if you don’t fancy eating the same thing day after day, you can freeze this in individual portions for a fast but hearty meal when you don’t have time to throw something together. Personally, I don’t mind eating this type of food multiple days in a row.
I have made this dish in various forms in the past few years. Combining creamy squash puree and some other vegetables (usually mushrooms and spinach) with pasta and parmesan: these are the building blocks for this dish. If you don’t fancy a lasagna and want to cut down on time, I would certainly suggest these flavor combinations with some penne. It never fails and is always immensely satisfying.
Of course, you can also consider simplifying the recipe if you see fit. Personally, I wanted to add some wilted spinach (cooked with the mushrooms) to the lasagna, but there wasn’t any at the store (I really have to stop going grocery shopping on Sunday afternoons! There is always empty shelves and disappointment awaiting me). I realize that this is ADDING something to the recipe and not simplifying it, but I don’t think sauteeing a few greens along with the mushrooms is very much more work. If you do go down the simplification route, I encourage you to keep the rosemary squash puree in the lasagna. It lends some extra moisture, creaminess, and a nice flavour.
Personally, I think this is a wonderful dish to make on a chilly Sunday afternoon. You’ll end up with plenty of glorious lasagna for the week ahead.
Preheat oven to 375F
Line two baking sheets with aluminum foil.
Lay sliced acorn squash and eggplant on baking sheets, season with salt and pepper, sprinkle 2 tablespoons of olive oil over everything, and pick one sprig of rosemary and sprinkle over squash.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until eggplant are browned and squash tender.
In the meantime, in a large saucepan heat up 1 tablespoon olive oil and pan fry sliced mushrooms with 1 minced garlic clove, a pinch of red pepper flakes, salt, pepper and about 2 teaspoons of finely chopped rosemary.
When mushrooms are golden brown, set aside.
In a food processor combine 2 cloves of garlic, roma tomatoes and pulse until completely pureed. In the same pan you cooked the mushrooms in, pour in roma tomatoes and season with salt, pepper and a pinch of red pepper flakes.
Cook for about 10 minutes (until the raw flavor goes away). Set aside.
When squash are fully cooked, chop them roughly and then puree in food processor with milk.
When smooth, set aside.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook approximately 15 lasagna sheets until about halfway cooked (5 minutes).
In a oven-safe 9x13 dish, spread 1/3 of the tomato sauce.
Add a layer of pasta.
Add 1/2 squash puree, all of the eggplant, 1/2 the mozzarella, 1 handful fresh basil, 1/3 of tomato sauce.
Add a layer of pasta.
Add the rest of the squash puree and all of the mushrooms.
Add final layer of pasta.
Add remaining tomato sauce, remaining mozzarella, 1 handful basil and parmesan.
Cover with aluminum foil and cook in 375F oven for 30 minutes covered and an additional 10 minutes uncovered (until top is golden brown). You may want to turn the oven to 'broil' for the last five minutes to make sure it's completely browned.
Remove from oven and cover with aluminum foil to rest for about 20 minutes.
Roasted vegetable lasagna Recipe was last modified: October 26, 2013 by