After months of 90+ degree weather here in Kentucky, the weather finally (thankfully) broke to reveal beautiful fall weather. Unlike a lot of people, fall is not my favorite season...it just reminds me that the cold of winter is just around the corner. But I do love fall and winter cooking, and I can finally get back to using my (new!) oven without turning my house into a sweat lodge.
The first fall dish I made this week was a butternut squash lasagna. My husband and I are picky about squash, so I thought I'd try something different with it. When I told my husband my plan, I have to admit the reaction was less than overwhelming. His exact words were, I think, "Well, I'll try it, but don't expect me to eat all of it." I had to promise him that I'd save some leftover chili in case he couldn't choke it down.
When I served it to him, he took two deep breaths (literally) and then put it gingerly into his mouth. And then put another bite in. His verdict? Not his favorite, but he'd eat it again. I liked it. It was sweet, savory, different, and is a perfect fall dish (and a great way to use up all of those butternut squashes I've been receiving from my CSA).
Roasted Butternut Lasagna
adapted from Oven Love
1 batch of Roasted Butternut Squash with Sage
2 Tbl unsalted butter
4 sage leaves, chopped
2 Tbl flour
1 1/2 cups milk (I used 2%)
2 1/2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated, separated into 2 ounce and 1/2 ounce piles
8 lasagna noodles, cooked to al dente
8 ounces fresh mozzarella, shredded
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
In a food processor, puree the squash and sage leaves. Add water little by little until the mixture is smooth.
In a small saucepan, over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the flour and sage and stir until bubbly. Add the milk slowly, while stirring constantly. Bring to a boil and then remove from the heat. Add two ounces of the Parmesan cheese and a pinch of nutmeg. Salt and pepper to taste.
In a small baking dish (I used 7"x11", but and 8"x8" will work too), spread a small amount of the squash puree. Add about 1/5 of the sauce, then 1/5 of the mozzarella, and a layer of noodles. Repeat with three more layers. Top the final noodle layer with sauce, mozzarella, and the final 1/2 ounce of Parmesan cheese.
Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and brown in spots. If you'd like it browner, put under the broiler for a few minutes. Top with chopped sage leaves and freshly ground pepper.