Vegetable Lasagne - starring Green Chard, Mushrooms, and Asparagus

I'm 80% sure that we've made this recipe before.  However, this last episode was... (how can I properly describe this?)... sooooo delicious! (!!!!)  The vegetables totally stole the show.  I guess it is a vegetable lasagne, but still. Though it takes a while to prep everything - such as slicing and blanching the asparagus, slicing and sautéing the mushrooms, and chopping and sautéing the chard - if you're anything like us, you'll end up gobbling a huge slice of lasagne shamelessly.  
  • What's so great about this recipe is that it calls for 3 cups of vegetables, and you get to choose which vegetables you want to use based on preference and availability. Included in the recipe is a list of recommended vegetables and how to prepare them. Awesome.  
  • Also awesome: It calls for no-boil noodles. Have you heard of/seen/used these? So much more convenient. I recommend Barilla.
  • And, big surprise to everyone, the recipe comes from Cook's Illustrated.

Anyway, here's the recipe: 

Vegetable Lasagne with Tomato Sauce (Cook’s Illustrated) (printer friendly version)
Most recently we made this with asparagus, Swiss chard, and mushrooms.  It was totally delicious, and nice that all of the ingredients were sautéed so we only used the oven for the put-together lasagne.

Smoked mozzarella, Gruyère, or Fontina can be substituted for the mozzarella and Pecorino Romano for the Parmesan. Also, three and one-half cups of your favorite prepared tomato sauce can be substituted for the sauce in this recipe. Because no-boil noodles come twelve to sixteen in a box, we suggest buying two boxes to ensure that you'll have the fifteen required for this lasagne. Serves 6 to 8.   

Ingredients

Lasagne
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or parsley leaves
15 no boil lasagna noodles (We use Barilla)
3 cups vegetables, cooked and seasoned (see below)
1 pound mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 4 cups)
5 ounces grated Parmesan cheese (about ⅔ cup)
Vegetable cooking spray for foil
Vegetables: Toss with enough olive oil to coat them lightly before roasting or sauté them in a few tablespoons of olive oil.
asparagus spears - trim tough ends, slice in half lengthwise, and cut into ½-inch pieces; blanch until crisp-tender, drain well, and sauté until tender, about 3 minutes
broccoli or cauliflower - cut into florets, blanch until crisp-tender, drain, chop into ¼-inch pieces and sauté until tender, about 4 minutes
eggplant - cut into ½-inch dice, roast until tender, about 35 minutes at 400 degrees
fennel - cut bulb into very thin strips; sauté until tender, about 15 minutes, or roast until tender, about 30 minutes at 400 degrees
mushrooms - trim and slice or dice; sauté until golden, about 5-7 minutes, or roast until tender, about 20 minutes at 400 degrees
onions - peel and cut into thin slices; sauté until soft and golden, 5-7 minutes, or roast until soft and golden, about 20 minutes at 400 degrees.
spinach or Swiss chard - wash, stem, and chop; sauté until wilted, about 5 minutes
zucchini - cut into ½-inch dice; sauté until tender, about 7 minutes, or roast until tender, about 35 minutes at 400 degrees
Vegetable Seasonings
minced garlic (optional)
minced fresh herbs (optional)
red pepper flakes (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat oil and garlic in 10-inch skillet over medium heat until fragrant but not brown, about 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes; simmer until thickened slightly, about 10 minutes. Stir in basil or parsley and salt and pepper to taste. Pour into large measuring cup. Add enough water to make 3 1/2 cups.
  2. Spread 1/2 cup sauce evenly over bottom of greased 13-by-9-inch lasagne pan. Lay three noodles crosswise over sauce, making sure they do not touch each other or sides of pan. Spread 3/4 cup prepared vegetables evenly over noodles, 1/2 cup sauce evenly over vegetables, and 3/4 cup mozzarella and 2 generous tablespoons Parmesan evenly over sauce. Repeat layering of noodles, vegetables, sauce, and cheeses three more times. For fifth and final layer, lay final three noodles crosswise over previous layer and top with with remaining 1 cup tomato sauce, 1 cup mozzarella, and 2 tablespoons Parmesan. (Can be wrapped with plastic and aluminum foil and frozen for up to 1 month. If frozen, defrost in refrigerator).
  3. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Cover pan with large sheet foil greased with cooking spray. Bake 25 minutes (30 minutes if chilled); remove foil and continue baking until top turns golden brown in spots, about 15 minutes. Remove pan from oven and let lasagne rest 5 minutes. Cut and serve immediately.

Comments

  1. i love the title of this post.

    barilla = italian greatness.

    i miss you and adore you, keep posting!

    ReplyDelete
  2. yyyuuuum! can't wait to try this!! sounds dee-lish!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, it is SO good. Let me know if you try and what you think!

    ReplyDelete

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