Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Pumpkin and Chicken Lasagna

As SJ likes to tell me, when you have a lot of leftovers, make some lasagna. Ok. I think she's less prone to mishaps than I am. Or maybe I should just not be in the kitchen while I'm taking lots of medicine (I'm sick - I think I have a cold but I do not know). I had some misadventures with this one, so I wound up having to make the pasta from scratch. I'll put the recipe for that in here too (it turns out you can make the pasta more simply than I did, with just all-purpose, eggs and salt. But you know me... I like to do things the hard way!), but feel free to buy pre-made or to make them the normal way unless you're just really bored or really in need of a work-out (I lost the clamp to my pasta roller, so I had to roll it by hand, too. My sheets turned out thinner than the store bought though, strangely enough).

Pasta:

235 grams fine semolina
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Mix the flour and salt and make a pile on your bread board. Make a well, then knead in the eggs and oil. Knead the dough for about ten minutes, then let rest for 10-20 minutes, covered in plastic. Roll it into a 6x9 square and cut into 6 sections. Keep the un-worked sections covered as you roll out each section of dough. Roll until you can see through it (I roll it until the grain of the wood is clearly discernible) and cut to the size of the pan (or if you're cooler than me, cut it smaller and use more than one sheet per layer). Lay each sheet of pasta on a bedsheet which has been lain across a table or counter, and let them dry for an hour or so before using. If you're of the boil preference, you may boil these noodles before using them. I will not be doing so. I will be using extra sauce so I don't have to.

Greens mixture:

2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 diced onion
1 diced hatch (anaheim) chile
5 cups chopped beet greens or chard
1 cup arugula
1/4 cup white wine
2 tablespoons lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until golden. Then add chile dice, salt, pepper and lemon. Cook down, then add greens and wine and cook down.

Bechamel:

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 1/2 cups milk
6 ounces white wine (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
pinch nutmeg

Melt butter, then add flour and stir until it is a light roux. Slowly pour the milk in (theoretically this should be heated first, but I forgot) while whisking and combine thoroughly. Add salt, pepper and nutmeg. If you are trying to up the liquid content of your sauce, as I was (I just don't want to boil my pasta), whisk in some wine.

Remainder:

1 1/4 cup pumpkin mash
1 1/2-2 cups ricotta
2-3 cups shredded or diced chicken
4 ounces mozzarella for top

Preheat oven to 375F. Oil the casserole dish, then layer in the following manner:
Noodle, pumpkin, ricotta, chicken, greens, bechamel, noodle, pumpkin, ricotta, chicken, greens, bechamel, noodle, bechamel. Bake for about an hour, then either take it out, or add the cheese on the top and bake until the top is golden, 15-30 minutes. Let it rest 15-30 minutes before serving. Serves 4.

2 comments:

  1. It looks wonderful ;)

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  2. This definitely looks good...go ahead - you made your own pasta? LOL - I love the idea of rolling it the size of the pan - now that's way coo!

    -DTW
    www.everydaycoookin.blogspot.com

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