Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Holiday Recipe Series: Hilary Mace’s Delish Butternut Squash Lasagna (a beautiful holiday vegetarian main dish)
I made this for Thanksgiving and it sure was tasty. My vegetable phobic, ardent meat eating father in law LOVED it. Said, "I don't want to know what's in it, but it is good."
I had tons of leftover roasted squash that I added leftover mashed potatoes to, cooked for awhile and then blended for a tasty soup. The dish is not easy to make (read, lots of steps), but it was well worth it. If you want a vegetarian tasty meal for the holiday, this could be it. I also didn't do the cookies at the end. I like to separate sweet from savory most of the time. Next time, though, I think I will try it.
4 medium sized butternut squash
2 tbsp butter
1 quart ricotta cheese
1 pint cream
Fresh grated parmesan cheese
VT Maple Syrup
Small container marscapone cheese (VT Butter and Cheese makes a good one)
One box lasagna noodles
1 bunch of fresh sage
Amaretti or almond cookies
Cut butternut squash in half just above the bulb- now you should have the neck and the bulb- cut the bulb in half and scoop out the seeds. Cut the neck in half.
Place in a roasting pan with a 1/2 inch of water in bottom- brush some melted butter onto the squash pieces. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, cover with foil and put in 350 oven for about 45 minutes or so, until it is really soft and scoop-able.
Whip the ricotta- put it in batches in a food processor (or use hand-held mixer) with a bit of grated parmesan and a smidge of cream. Add a dash of fresh squeezed lemon juice and pulse- do this to all of your ricotta and combine together in a big bowl- it should be creamy but not runny. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and additional lemon as desired.
When the squash is done cooking, let cool and then scoop it out of its skin. You are going to pulse this in the food processor as well- in batches add squash, a spoonful of marscapone cheese, a grate or two of parmesan, and some chopped sage.
While you are pulsing all of this you might need to add some cream to bring it all together. Season with a dash of maple syrup, salt and pepper.
In a 9x13 glass baking dish, layer the noodles with the ricotta and squash purees, sprinkling a little parmesan here and there as you see fit. When you get to the top, sprinkle with grated mozzarella and crumbled amaretti cookies.
Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 30-40 min. Take the foil off for the and bake for another 10-15 min so the cheese gets a wee bit brown and bubbly.
Before serving sprinkle with some freshly chopped sage.