March 31, 2010

Pesto Lassagne

Guess what?  It FINALLY stopped raining here; a good thing because we were all about to clamber aboard our ARK and set sail on our lake for a while.

Spring, come on and visit us up here in the Green Mountains.  Anytime now.  Any 'ol time...

Seriously, you can just stay at my house for a while.  

Would you like that? 

How 'bout if I made you some PESTO LASAGNE?  Would that entice you to stick around until, oh I don't know...

Pesto Lassagne (by T.J.)

 1-1 1/2C pesto (great way to use up any summer leftovers you might have hanging around in the freezer)

12 lassagne noodles

2-3 cloves minced garlic

2 C cheese (I used an Italian blend of Mozzarella, Romano, Parmesan)

2 C (or 15 oz) Ricotta

1-2 tomatoes cut into small chunks

2 1/2 mixed, chopped veggies (zuchinni, eggplant, squashes, onions, spinach etc)

1 egg
olive oil

Italian Seasonings/ salt/pepper

To begin, place the lassagne noodles in a pan of warm water to soak for about 10 minutes.  That's all you need to do to prep them as the presoak and the added liquids from the veggies and pesto soften them up during baking.  Heat up a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot.  Throw in veggies (including tomatoes) and garlic and begin to saute.

Add in any seasonings you want- I tend to go heavy on the usual suspects: basil, oregano and then I add in a bit of marjoram and thyme.  Or just shake the heck out of your spice jar for a while. 

Add in about a tablespoon of the pesto to the veggies and salt and pepper to taste.  Continue cooking until fork tender, but not mushy.  Should take about 10 minutes depending on the type of vegetables you used. 

While that is cooking, mix up the ricotta cheese with the egg and add a little water until you get a spreadable, but thick consistency.

Now the layering begins.  I have a specific small lassagne pan for the job, but you could use any deep pan you have from 13X9 on down.  My tip here would be to see which pan best fits your lassagne noodles before beginning.  Just add in or take out a few noodles as needed.

Coat the bottom of the pan with a thin layer of pesto then a layer of lassagne noodle.  Just shake off the excess water and place directly in pan while still firm.  Next put a few dollops of the Ricotta cheese mixture and a sprinkling of the cheeses.  Finally, spread a handful of the veggie mixture over the cheese and mix in a few spoonfuls of the pesto.  Begin again with the lassagne noodles this time coating the top of the noodles with some pesto, next the cheeses, veggies ... so on and so forth until everything's been used up.  End with the noodles and sprinkle a little bit of cheese over top for good measure.

Bake covered @ 350* for 30 minutes.  Uncover and bake another 10 minutes or until bubbly and slightly browned.

Serve as is or with tomato gravy.


Mrs. Bird said...

Yummy! I'll try that out!

Nic said...

YumO!! That looks awesome!!

Darlene said...

YUM TJ that looks and sounds awesome!!! SOOOOOO, what time did you say dinner is served????

It sounds like a wonderful non-profit organization you work for. Glad we are supporting one of the young positive roll-models. Lexi loves her and her songs so she is just ecstatic. I'm SURE she is having a difficult time concentrating in school today. Only a couple more hours to go though.....♥

blueviolet said...

If that's what you're serving, I'll stay around as long as you want!

T.J. said...

Come on over everyone! The more the merrier, just, um, don't forget to bring Spring.

Allison said...

I'm totally requesting this for the next time I see you :)

Anonymous said...

LOVE pesto... and will give this recipe a try! Thanks for sharing... and you are welcome aboard my Ark any time.

I'm finally getting around to adding to my blog roll, hope you don't mind you are on it.

Jenilee said...

looks really yummy!

Amy said...

Thanks for following me to. I think today is supposed to be the last of our rain. This weekend is going to be in the 70's and sunny, I hope! Looking forward to spring weather!

Leslie said...

yum, save some for me. you are only a few hours away...i will try to be right over!!!

Colleen said...

Watch out, TJ. One more post like this and Leslie and I are packing up the kids and heading to your house! I'm already halfway there. :)

alita said...

I'm sooooooooo hungry now. Seriously! I had hot dogs and sauerkraut. Which is NOT pesto Lasagna. (pout)


I promise it is the last blog change that I do for a long while. I'm tired of playing around with it. I'm so indecisive!

Yellow House said...

YUM! I will have three helpings, please! Looking forward to trying the recipe. :)

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