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White Lasagna with Wild Mushrooms, 3 Cheeses and Kale

Recipes from 7/29/17 by Chef Michelle Bernstein

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Oven-ready lasagna noodles, or your favorite lasagna noodles cooked according to package instructions
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
5 tablespoons butter, divided
2 garlic cloves, sliced thin
2 shallots, minced
1½ pounds of your favorite mushrooms, 3-4 different types, all stemmed, cleaned, sliced
2 sprigs fresh tarragon, leaves removed, chopped
¼ cup finely chopped Italian parsley
¼ cup flour
8 cups kale
2½ cups milk
2½ cups grated fresh parmesan cheese, divided
3 cups fresh ricotta cheese
2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
Salt and pepper

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a large sauté pan until the butter foams.  Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.  Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally until the moisture has cooked-off of the mushrooms and they and golden brown.  Add the tarragon and parsley, season with salt and pepper and set aside until ready to build the lasagna.

Meanwhile, heat one tablespoon of the remaining olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.  Add 4 cups of the kale and sauté until softened, about 3-4 minutes.  Remove and season with salt and pepper.  Repeat with the remaining olive oil and kale.  Once the kale is cool enough to handle, using cheesecloth or a lint-free dish towel, wring out as much liquid as possible and roughly chop the kale.  Mix with the ricotta.  Set aside until ready to build the lasagna.

Meanwhile in a small pot, melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter.  Add the flour and cook over medium-heat, stirring, for 3-4 minutes. Whisk in the milk and cook, stirring, until the mixture comes to a boil and the milk thickens.  Taste to make sure the flour taste has been cooked out, cook for 1-2 more minutes if necessary.  Whisk in ½ cup parmesan cheese and season with salt and pepper.  Set aside until ready to build the lasagna.

Begin layering your favorite lasagna or casserole dish with 1/3 of the béchamel.
Place the pasta, overlapping on top of the béchamel, then follow with 1/3 of the kale-ricotta mixture, spread nice and evenly, top with 1/3 of the mushrooms then a little of the parmesan and mozzarella cheeses.  Keep layering until you finish with the ingredients.

Spray a sheet of aluminum foil with nonstick cooking spray (so the cheese doesn’t stick) and cover the lasagna completely.  Bake in a preheated 375˚F oven for 45 minutes.  Uncover and continue baking just until the cheese is golden brown, about 10-15 more minutes. Place a baking sheet tray on the rack under the lasagna to catch any drippings from the lasagna.  You can line the sheet tray with aluminum foil for easy clean-up.  Allow to cool for 15 minutes before serving.