Use Your Noodle(s)

We are tomato-haters (and proud of it!) around my house, so Italian food is always a little tricky.

So I am sure you can see while I was thrilled to find a no-tomato-sauce lasagna recipe. Who knew there was such a thing?!? Plus, this recipe is a perfect excuse to buy and then use a fancy Le Creuset baking dish. Though I am sure you could do it in a less fancy baking dish just as easily.

I haven't tried the recipe myself but I am basically dying to. If one of you beats me to it, let me know how it goes!

Here you are, from the Williams-Sonoma kitchen.

Garden Lasagna

1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup raw baby spinach leaves, plus 1 lb. baby spinach, blanched, squeezed dry
1 1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3 cups ricotta cheese
1 egg
4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups milk
1 lb. cremini mushrooms, sliced 1.4" thick, cooked until golden brown
1 jar (16 oz.) roasted red bell peppers, drained, sliced 1/4" thick
6 oz. no-boil lasagna noodles, torn into rough 2" pieces
4 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

In a blender, combine basil, raw spinach, 1/2 tsp. garlic and oil; process until thick sauce forms. Add Parmiggiano-Reggiano, salt and pepper. In a bowl, combine ricotta, egg, salt and pepper.

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Cook shallots 4 minutes. Add 1 tsp. garlic and flour, cook 1 minute. Stir in milk; cook on medium-high heat 8-10 minutes. Transfer to bowl; cool 15 minutes. Stir in basil puree. In a separate bowl, combine mushrooms, bell peppers, blanched spinach, salt and pepper.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter 3 1/2 quart shallow Dutch oven (or other heavy-duty baking pan. I think). Spread 1/2 cup sauce on bottom of pot; arrange single layer of noodles on top of sauce. Top with 1/2 cup ricotta mixture, 1 cup vegetable mixture, 1/2 cup sauce mixture and 1 cup mozzarella. Layer noodles, ricotta, vegetables, sauce and mozzarella 2 more times, then add layer of noodles, ricotta, vegetables and noodles. Spread remaining sauce on top; sprinkle with 1 1/2 cups mozzarella.

Cover and bake for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes more.

Serves 8-10.

Whether you bake up this tasty dish or not, wanna tell us which of our new Roamin' Holiday dresses you would wear while eating it?


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