Recipe by Local Roots recipe contributor, Chef Casey Corn @casey_corn
The only intro I'm going to give for this dish is that my husband ate this for 6 meals in a row, and was excited every time. In fact, this is probably one of his favorite dishes I've ever made! The basic concept of this dish is creating a butternut squash bechamel, so get creative with it!
1 ea butternut squash
2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbs + 1½ tsp kosher salt
½ tsp ground white pepper
3 c whole milk
6 Tbs unsalted butter
6 Tbs all purpose flour
6 ea sage leaves
4 ea garlic cloves
1 ea shallot
5 ea whole cloves
¾ c whole milk ricotta
2 Tbs chopped basil
9 sheets lasagna (or enough for 3 layers)
1. Preheat oven to 400F. Carefully trim the top and root off of the butternut squash, then cut lengthwise, to scoop out the seeds.
2. Place butternut squash skin side down on a foil-lined sheet tray, then drizzle with olive oil and season with 1 Tbs salt. Put the sheet tray in the oven, and roast about 30 minutes until the butternut squash starts to blister on top, then lower heat to 375F and cook about 15-20 minutes until fork tender. Remove from oven and let cool.
3. While squash is roasting, smash the garlic and add to a small pot with the milk, sage leaves, ground white pepper and 1 tsp of salt. Cut the shallot in half, and on one half, push the whole cloves in stem-side down so they stud the shallot. Place both halves in the milk mixture, then place the pot over low heat to infuse the flavors. Do not let this milk mixture steam or come to a boil. Infuse at least 10 minutes, or as long as your butternut squash is cooking!
4. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta, chopped basil and the last ½ teaspoon of salt, and stir until mixed through. Cover and set aside.
5. Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Once boiling, cook your lasagna sheets as per the instructions on the box. When they are done, strain and then layer them between parchment paper so that they don’t stick to each other.
6. When butternut squash is cool enough to handle, but not cold, peel off the skin, and place in a large bowl. Use a whisk to mash the squash until few lumps remain.
7. Strain the milk mixture into a slightly larger pot, then add in butter and flour. Bring heat up to medium, and whisk unit the bechamel has thickened, about 5 minutes. If it isn’t thickening, turn the heat up, just make sure you are whisking fairly constantly so that the milk does not scald. Once it’s thick, add into the squash, and whisk until smooth.
8. Grease a 9x13 baking dish then place 3 lasagna sheets across the bottom. Use a large spoon or small offset spatula to spread a third of the ricotta mixture onto the pasta. Ladle about 2 cups of butternut béchamel on top of the ricotta. Repeat two more times, finishing with the butternut squash béchamel on top.
9. Carefully place in oven and cook uncovered until bubbling. If desired, broil to get the top slightly brown.
10. Serve hot!
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