A while back, I made the Englishman watch Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead with me. This resulted in a near obsession with wanting to buy a juicer and terrorize all solid foods.
About a week after watching the movie, we went to the Kijkshop and bought a juicer. 80 euros ? Sure, you’ll do.
The fad lasted about 2 weeks. And the juicer has sat on our kitchen cabinet since mid July. But since the start of fall, Kale has come back into season and become available in our grocery store. This sparked the idea to buy a giant bag of the pre-chopped stuff. But when I came home and threw a bunch into the juicer, it made a horrible sound and nearly broke the damn thing. Because it was so finely chopped, it wouldn’t juice. And now I was thinking to myself, what the hell am I gonna do with a pound of kale!?
My mother often incorporates kale’s distant cousin, spinach, as the leafy green in her bechemel before spreading on the cheesy layers in her lasagna, but I found that kale was a perfect substitute. It remained creamy since it was added to the bechemel, and made me feel slightly better about eating lasagna since there was technically now 3 vegetables involved (re: tomatoes, onion AND kale).
So I ate 3 pieces.
For the bechemel
- 1 15-oz. pkg. ricotta cheese
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- 1 tbsp grated nutmeg
- 1/3 cup milk (skim or whole, whichever)
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 1/3cup finely chopped kale
For the Lasagna
- 80 to 100 grams of mozarella, chopped (for sprinkling)
- 1/4 cup grated Paremsan (for sprinkling)
- precooked (or no cook) lasagna noodles
For the Tomato Sauce
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 can whole tomato (I gently crush them with my hands to break them apart)
- ½ tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 tbsp olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Start with your sauce.
Heat your olive oil in a sauce pan, adding the red pepper flakes, and garlic and stirring until the garlic is brown. Then add your onions and cook them until they become translucent. Add your whole tomatoes which you have crushed, and set your heat to medium high.
3. Then make your bechemel.
Set your heat to low. In a small sauce pan, melt your butter and add your milk and nutmeg. Once the milk gets warm, add the ricotta and whisk everything together. Once everything is mixed, add your Parmesan, and lastly, your kale. Set the heat to medium, and allow everything to thicken. This will take about 5 minutes. Give it a few good stirs in between. (If you like your bechemel a little thicker, add about 2 tbsp of flour immediately after you’ve added nutmeg to your pan)
4. Assemble your lasagna
Spread 1/4 cup sauce in your baking pan, along with a dollup of your bechemel. Then cover the sauce with lasagna noodles. Next, add another layer of sauce, then bechemel, then a sprinkle of your “sprinkling” cheese. Then, lasagna noodles…ect. The last layer should be bechemel and cheese sprinkled.
5. Bake for about 30 minutes. For the last 5 minutes of baking, I like to turn the broiler on, so the cheese gets nice and crunchy.
Sigh after every bite.
Audio Pairing “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele
check out this ping back!