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Thursday, November 6, 2008

Mushroom Spinach Lasagna

This is one of the recipes I had posted on Baby Center's CFYF board, when it was my turn to choose the meal of the week recipes. I'm a little bummed that none of the other ladies tried it. I understand, because after seeing how expensive Gruyere cheese is, I may have decided against it, LOL. But I bought a small chunk of expensive cheese and mixed it with mozzarella and Parmesan. Also the recipe is quite long, so one may be turned of by that. Once the cheese sauce is made, the rest comes together quickly and easily.

I halved the recipe, in case we wouldn't care for it, since I really didn't want more leftovers in the fridge. I used my 8X8 square pan and it was the perfect size for us. Hubby was in love. He commented on how he loves his meat, but would be willing to eat this lasagna, once a month. Mr.B was leery about the spinach and avoided the red pepper, but ate pretty much his whole serving. I enjoyed it very much and it reminded me a lot of Alfredo Pasta. The Gruyere brought a sharpness to the dish, that complemented the earthiness of the mushrooms and spinach, and the sweetness of the roasted red pepper.


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Mushroom-Spinach Lasagna
via Cooking Pleasures Magazine

This creamy lasagna is studded with nuggets of mushrooms and bright bits of spinach and roasted red bell pepper. You can make the entire dish ahead of time and freeze it or, if you’re tight on freezer space, you can prepare just the vegetables and sauce in advance to keep on hand.

SAUCE
1/2 cup minced shallots
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh sage or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 lb. assorted mushrooms (not portobellos), sliced
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/3 cup butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups lower-sodium vegetable broth
2 cups whole milk
2 tablespoons dry sherry, if desired
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 cups shredded Gruyère cheese

VEGETABLES
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 (10-oz.) pkg. frozen spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 (6- or 7-oz.) jar roasted red bell peppers, drained, patted dry, julienned

LASAGNA
9 oven-ready lasagna noodles (12 if using 2 (8-inch) baking pans)
3/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

1. Cook and stir shallots and sage in 2 tablespoons oil in large skillet over medium-high heat 1 to 2 minutes or until shallots are slightly softened. Add mushrooms; cook 7 minutes or until mushrooms are softened and most of the liquid has evaporated, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt and pepper.
2. Add butter to skillet; stir until melted. Whisk in flour; cook 2 minutes, whisking constantly. Slowly add broth, whisking until mixture boils. Add milk, sherry and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg; return to a boil. Remove from heat; stir in Gruyère cheese until melted. (Sauce can be made 3 days ahead and refrigerated or 1 month ahead and frozen.)
3. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in large skillet over medium heat until hot. Cook and stir garlic 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add spinach; cook 1 to 2 minutes, tossing to coat with oil. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg. Place in bowl; cool. (Spinach can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)
4. Spray 13x9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.* Spread 1/2 cup of the sauce in bottom of dish; top with 3 lasagna noodles. Spread spinach over noodles; cover with 1/2 cup of the sauce. Top with 3 noodles. Spread bell peppers over noodles; cover with 1/2 cup of the sauce. Top with 3 noodles; spread with remaining sauce. Sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. (Lasagna can be made to this point 2 days ahead and refrigerated or 1 month ahead and frozen. Defrost; let stand at room temperature 30 minutes before baking.)
5. Heat oven to 350°F. Bake, uncovered, 45 to 50 minutes or until lasagna is bubbling and cheese begins to turn golden brown. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
TIP *Or spray 2 (8-inch) pans with cooking spray. Spread 1/4 cup sauce in each pan; top with 2 lasagna noodles. Spread spinach over noodles; cover with 1/4 cup of the sauce. Top with 2 noodles. Spread with bell peppers; cover with 1/4 cup of the sauce. Top with 2 noodles; spread with remaining sauce. Sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

8 servings
PER SERVING: 450 calories, 29 g total fat (14 g saturated fat), 21 g protein, 28.5 g carbohydrate, 80 mg cholesterol, 935 mg sodium, 3.5 g fiber

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