Thursday, March 07, 2013

Vegetable Lasagna

I finally had the baby, so we're leaning strongly toward meals that can be eaten for a few days at a time. I'm giving extra preference to things that can just be made from odds and ends I find in the fridge too, since I'm still working out the logistics of running errands with an infant. After I'd attempted to make some yogurt for Ross, and overheated it, I wound up with some really lovely farmer's cheese. So, I hung it to drain overnight, and salted it in the morning. We decided that lasagna would be the result of this mistake. Adding to that a tomato sauce made from canned products and random veggies in the fridge, this turned out to be significantly more delicious than either Ross or I expected it to be. And because it actually worked out really well, here it is. Hope you enjoy!

1 box no boil lasagna noodles (unless you just like boiling your own)
1 14-ounce can each: crushed tomatoes, stewed tomatoes, diced tomatoes
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
juice of two lemons
1/2 cup dried leeks (or 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh leeks)
1 cup each: sliced carrot, sliced celery
12 ounces beer (I used a Belgian white)
1 tablespoon each: dried basil, dried parsley
1 cup sliced button mushrooms
1 teaspoon each: dried mint, dried marjoram
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste
1 pound mozzarella
1 pound ricotta or fresh cheese

Combine all ingredients except cheeses and pasta, and simmer for an hour or so, until thicker but still thin enough to spread. Put 1/4 of the sauce on the bottom of a 9x13" pan, then line with noodles. Sprinkle 1/3 of the mozzarella  onto the noodles, then half of the ricotta or farmer's cheese. Top with 1/4 of the sauce, then another layer of noodles. Do this again, then top with remaining 1/4 of sauce. Bake at 400F for 45 minutes, then top with the last 1/3 of mozzarella (and some parmesan, if desired) and bake another 15 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

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