Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Nano's butternut squash lasagna

Ok so this isn't REALLY Nano's lasagna but when I had the family over for thanksgiving i put Nano in charge of putting the lasagna together so I told her I would say it's her lasagna. The original recipe of from Giada DeLaurentis but i changed it a bit. I made this many years ago (ok maybe it was 4 years ago) and O and I loved it so i remembered it and made it for Thanksgiving this year. During the recipe i will say when i changed the recipe.
Peel butternut squash and cut into cubes.
In a pan with olive oil saute some onions (not in original recipe)
When the onions are translucent add the butternut squash
Some salt and pepper and mix so that everything is covered in olive oil. Cover the butternut squash until it is tender (it depends on how big the pieces are)
In a mixer puree the mixture and flavor it with salt if needed. In the original recipe Giada added amaretto cookies.
Mixture after it is pureed.
Next make the béchamel sauce. In a pan melt butter and add flour. Cook the flour a little just to get rid of the flour taste but don't brown the flour.
Add the milk and whisk until thick. Season with salt and nutmeg.
In a food processor add the béchamel sauce and fresh basil leaves and process so make a green sauce.
In a lasagna pan ladle a couple spoonfuls of the butternut squash sauce then add the noodles and then a couple more spoonfuls of the butternut squash sauce.
Spread some of the basil flavored béchamel.
Sprinkle on some shaved Parmesan cheese.
In the original recipe she used regular mozzarella but i used fresh mozzarella because it is what i had at the time but next time i wouldn't use fresh because it doesn't spread as it melts.

Repeat until there is no more sauce left or you have 4 layers of noodles. I am using here the noodles that don't need to be boiled first. On the final last layer pour the rest of the basil béchamel sauce.
Sprinkle more Parmesan and some fresh mozzarella. Bake the lasagna until heated through.
Before the lasagna is done cooking i sprinkles some pine nuts on top (arab flare)
and Serve. This dish is really good, my Dad and Laith especially liked this dish however if i make it again I will add pine nuts in between layers as well as either chunks of the butternut squash (rather then a fine puree) or some other vegetable or chicken even.

Written Recipe:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 onion
1 (1 1/2 to 2-pound) butternut squash peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch cubes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 1/2 cups whole milk
Sprinkle of nutmeg
3/4 cup (lightly packed) fresh basil leaves
12 no-boil lasagna noodles
2 1/2 cups shredded whole-milk mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup grated Parmesan