Monday, November 12, 2012

Butternut Squash Lasagna

Who knew that vegetables had some many uses! Well, I guess I did, but still . . . this was my first attempt at making a meatless version of lasagna and it turned out pretty well.

We had some friends over for dinner and one of our guests was vegetarian. Last time we had them over for dinner she ended up bringing a little something for her main dish. This time though I wanted to be able to make everything for dinner and not have to have her bring her own food. Since Fall is now here it seemed like the perfect opportunity to make a winter squash lasagna dish.

I wasn't sure how I should cook the squash. Some recipes called for baking it, some steaming it, some boiling. I tried microwaving it for a very short timeframe but soon gave up on that idea. I peeled it, cut it into chunks, and threw it in a pan with a bit of water to steam it soft. It worked great! Once the squash was steamed I threw it in the blender and pureed it smooth. All this was happening while the noodles were boiling.

It came together smoothly and tasted great. I think the leftovers may have been even better than the first round. Enjoy!

Butternut Squash Lasagna
Source: Weight Watchers

10 ounces uncooked lasagna noodles (about 12 noodles)
24 ounces butternut squash, peeled and diced into 1 inch squares
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups fat-free evaporated milk
2 cloves minced garlic
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 golden raisins
1/2 cup dried cranberries
2 tablespoons chopped pine nuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Boil lasagna noodles to al dente, according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

Place diced butternut squash into a large skillet. Pour 1/2 cup the water into the skillet and then cover and simmer over medium heat until the squash is tender, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Cool slightly and then transfer the squash to a food processor/blender. Blend until smooth. Set aside.

Place flour in a small saucepan and very gradually whisk in milk and garlic. Warm over low heat, stirring constantly, until sauce simmers and is thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.

Spread 1/4 cup of cheese sauce over bottom of a 9 x 13-inch glass or metal pan. Cover with 3 lasagna noodles; top with 1/3 of squash and 1/2 cup of cheese sauce. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup of raisins. Cover with 3 more lasagna noodles and spread with 1/3 of remaining squash and 1/2 cup of cheese sauce; sprinkle with 1/4 cup of raisins. Cover with 3 more lasagna noodles and top with remaining squash and raisins; cover with last 3 lasagna noodles, pressing sheets firmly down. Top with remaining cheese sauce; sprinkle with pine nuts and remaining mozzarella cheese

Bake until lasagna bubbles around edges and is browned on top, about 30 minutes.

Makes 8 servings  (1 serving = 9 points on weight watchers points plus)