Monday, September 10, 2012

Butternut Squash Lasagna

Sometimes in my kitchen I feel like I'm on Iron Chef America, and that I have a secret ingredient that I have to turn into something tasty.
Last night's "episode" consisted of this 4 pound butternut squash that I harvested from the farm garden about a month ago and has been hanging out under our sink since then. For size comparison, see my chef knife beside it.
I really love squash. But it tastes like autumn to me, and a month ago when I was sweating profusely I wasn't in the mood to make anything with it. However, I found a recipe on (where else?) Pinterest that I pinned to come back to when I was ready for squash. Here's the original recipe, which was squash stuffed shells. Aldis  doesn't have shells, so I opted for lasagna noodles. Here's my adapted recipe:

Butternut Squash Lasagna

1 butternut squash, peeled and diced into 1" cubes
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
couple Tbsp olive oil

Put the above in a mixing bowl and coat the squash cubes. Then put on a lightly oiled cookie sheet and roast for 40 minutes at 400, stirring halfway through cooking time.

Meanwhile, saute:
2 Tbsp butter
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, minced
2 stalks celery, minced
4 slices of bacon, previously fried and then cut into small pieces

Once the squash is finished baking, put back into the mixing bowl and mash with a potato masher. Add:
1/3 c cottage cheese
the butter/garlic/onion/celery mixture
1/3 c grated Parmesan

Layer the squash mixture in a 9x13 pan with lasagna noodles and Italian style cheese mix. I used 6 lasagna noodles, but I'm thinking I should have used 9 and put a layer on the bottom of the pan. Otherwise, the squash mixture stuck to the bottom of the pan.

Then cover with bechamel sauce:
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp flour
about 2 c milk/half&half or mix
1/3 c Italian cheese mixture
1/3 c grated Parmesan
4 sage leaves, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

Melt the butter in a sauce pan. Then whisk in the flour and sage. Cook for a couple minutes then whisk in the milk and cheeses. Pour over the lasagna and sprinkle extra cheese on top.

Bake for 20 minutes at 350, or until cheese starts to turn golden.

You'll notice I added bacon, and used cottage cheese in lieu of mascarpone. I have no other recipes that use mascarpone, and cottage cheese will be eaten as a side dish in our house. I added bacon so the Hubs would eat it.
Eaten for lunch with chocolate yogurt mousse on the side. The Hubs had a leftover cheddar-jalapeno brat with his for lunch today.

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