07 Nov 2010 05:53 pm

Karol’s Butternut Squash and Walnut Lasagna

Butternut Squash Walnut Lasagna1 medium-sized butternut squash
½ cup coarsely chopped walnut pieces
1 tsp salt
freshly ground pepper

4 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, minced
8 oz mushrooms, sliced
3 tablespoons flour
3 cups milk
½ cup chopped fresh sage
salt and freshly ground pepper

8 oz ricotta, stirred until smooth.
2/3 cup freshly grated parmesan

12 no-boil lasagna noodles

Slice the butternut squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the strings and seeds. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake in a 350° oven until the neck of the squash can be poked easily with a fork, approximately 45 minutes. Set aside until cool enough to handle.

Heat a medium-sized heavy skillet over medium-low heat. Add walnut pieces and toast, shaking the pan occasionally, until browned and fragrant, 10 – 12 minutes. Remove from heat.

Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter over medium heat in a medium-sized, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add onion and sauté until soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium-low. Add remaining 3 tablespoons of butter and stir until melted. Add flour and cook, stirring, until flour is lightly toasted, approximately 5 minutes. Slowly pour in milk, stirring to evenly incorporate milk into mushroom mixture. Continue stirring until mixture thickens and just begins to boil lightly. Stir in chopped sage leaves and flavor with salt and pepper. Remove from heat.

Scoop the squash flesh from the skin and place into a food processor. Pulse in food processor until completely smooth, scraping down the sides of the processor bowl to ensure all pieces are pureed. Add toasted walnut pieces, 1 teaspoon salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Pulse once or twice briefly to evenly mix in walnut pieces. Do not over-process: mixture should remain chunky.

Lightly oil a 13” x 9” x 2” baking pan. Spread bottom and sides of pan with a layer of the mushroom sauce. Lay three of the lasagna sheets in a single layer atop the sauce in the bottom of the pan. Spread 1/4 of the remaining mushroom sauce evenly across the noodles. Place 1/3 of the squash mixture on top of the sauce in small dollops and spread evenly. Spread 1/3 of the ricotta on top of the squash.

Lay three more pasta sheets in a layer on top of the ricotta and repeat the above process two more times. Place final three pasta sheets on top and spread with remaining sauce. Cover with shredded parmesan. Bake in 350° oven until filling is bubbly and top is browned, approximately 35 – 45 minutes. Remove from oven to a cooling rack and allow to set for 15 minutes before cutting.

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