25 January 2009

roasted vegetable lasagna •

I had something entirely different in mind when I set out to fulfill the requirements of the Joust; a dish incorporating mushrooms, cauliflower, and noodles. But in honor of The Leftover Queen herself, I decided to whip up a recipe using the pantry and food items that I already had on hand. It is amazing when you start poking around in the depths of the kitchen, the treasures you unearth. Farmers Cheese with Dill? Where did that come from? The parsley was purchased for another recipe that didn’t get made (do you ever do this?). I had a bit of parmesan cheese hanging out in a bag, begging to be used before it got lost in the black hole of the refrigerator. Organic carrots were purchased just because they looked so pretty and healthy (and orange is one of my favorite colors)...but 5 pounds??  It seems like every magazine I have opened lately has featured roasted vegetables of some sort, and I have wanted to give the procedure a whirl. Why not Roasted Vegetable Lasagna? 

Roasted Vegetable Lasagna •

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 

Roasted Vegetables •

1 head cauliflower, cut into flowerets, then sliced
1 head broccoli, cut into flowerets, then sliced
4 large carrots, sliced into 1/4" rounds
1 large onion, sliced
1 (16 ounce) package of button mushrooms, sliced
5 - 8 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
Salt and cracked Pepper

I had enough vegetables to fill two 9 x 13 pans. Dribble vegetables with extra virgin olive oil, salt, and cracked pepper. Roast in oven for approximately 30 - 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are slightly brown around edges. Scoop all vegetables into one of the 9 x 13 pans, set aside.

While the vegetables are roasting, boil one package of lasagna noodles according to directions (al dente) drain, and set aside. If using Okara Pasta, use it fresh and layer per instructions below.

Cheese Sauce •

8 tablespoons butter
8 tablespoons white unbleached flour
4 cups milk
2 cups cubed Farmers Cheese with Dill (Hennings)
1 cup fresh parsley, minced
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
3 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and Pepper to taste

In a medium saucepan, melt butter. Whisk in flour until well blended. Add milk all at once, whisking over medium heat until thickened. Add farmers cheese, parsley, parmesan cheese and garlic. Stir until all cheese is melted. Add salt and/or pepper if desired.

1 (8 ounce) package shredded mozzarella cheese

Using the empty 9 x 13 pan, layer in this order:

1 cup cheese sauce, lasagna noodles, 3 cups vegetables, 2 cups sauce, one-third of the mozzarella cheese, lasagna noodles, 3 cups vegetables, 2 cups sauce, one-third mozzarella cheese, etc. End with noodles. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese if desired. Cover with foil and bake 30 minutes. Uncover and continue baking for another 5 minutes. Let set for at least 10 minutes before cutting.