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End of Summer Lasagna

Erica Schwarz

Ingredients
  

  • 8 oz sliced mushrooms
  • 4 Tbs unsalted butter divided
  • 1 lb Italian sausage casings removed
  • 2 medium zucchini diced
  • 1/2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 1/2 tsp kosher salt divided
  • 2 Tbs all-purpose flour
  • 2 cup milk
  • 1 15 oz container ricotta
  • 1 Tbs fresh oregano leaves chopped
  • 2 Tbs fresh parsley chopped
  • 2/3 cup corn kernels thawed if frozen
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • cooking spray
  • 4 cup part-skim mozzarella shredded
  • 2 cup shredded fontina cheese
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiana-Reggiano cheese
  • 12 lasagna noodles

Instructions
 

  • Put a large pot of water to boil. Preheat oven to 425F.
  • In a large nonstick skillet over high heat, melt 2 T butter. Add the mushrooms and brown. For more in-depth instruction see my How to Brown Mushrooms article. Move browned mushrooms to a plate and set aside.
  • In the same skillet over medium-high heat, brown the sausage breaking the meat up into small bits as it cooks. Once browned and no longer pink, move the sausage to a bowl lined with 2 layers of paper towels to drain the fat. Set aside.
  • Layer the diced zucchini on a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle with 1/2 t salt and drizzle 1 T olive oil. Toss to coat the zucchini. Roast in the oven at 425F ~8-10 minutes until just softened and a touch browned, but not completely roasted. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  • To make the bechamel, heat a medium saucepan on medium-high heat. Add the remaining 2T butter and the flour. Cook, stirring regularly, 4-5 minutes to make a roux. Whisking continually, add the milk. Cook, stirring, 5 minutes until very slightly thickened. Add 1 t salt and a pinch pepper and set aside.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, 1 t salt, the herbs, and 1/4 c of the prepared bechamel (I always add a little bechamel to the ricotta in any lasagna - makes it creamier and easier to spread).
  • Cook the lasagna noodles according to package directions in heavily salted water. Drain and rinse briefly with cold water to prevent noodles from sticking to each other.
  • OK, we're ready to put it together...
  • In a lasagna pan or other deep baking dish sprayed with cooking spray, spread 1/4 c bechamel. To the remaining bechamel in the saucepan add the sausage and stir.
  • In the lasagna dish over the bechamel, layer 3 lasagna noodles, trimming if necessary to fit. Layer half each of the mushrooms, corn, and zucchini. Layer 1/2 c fontina, 1/4 c parmesan, and 1 c mozzarella. Layer 3 more noodles. For the second layer, spread half the sausage-bechamel mixture and half the ricotta-herb mixture.
  • Layer another 3 noodles. Layer the remaining mushrooms, corn, and zucchini. Layer 1/2 c fontina, 1/4 c parmesan, and 1 c mozzarella. Layer 3 noodles. Layer the rest of the sausage-bechamel and rest of the ricotta-herb mixture. Layer the last 3 noodles (I had to press everything down pretty well by this point to get it to fit). Top with 1/2 c fontina, 1/4 c parmesan, and 2 cups mozzarella.
  • Bake at 350F for an hour. The cheese on top will brown before the lasagna is cooked all the way through, so once it browns (~30 minutes into the cooking time), top with foil.
  • Remove from the oven and let lasagna set 15 minutes before cutting to serve. Serves a crowd (~8-12) - after all, it's lasagna!