Prep 30 mins
Cook 1 hr 30 mins
Use a mandolin slicer to get all the veggies paper thin; that way they'll melt into one another, and this whole mixture will become homogenized goodness. Don't let the bechamel intimidate you. This French Mother Sauce is an alchemy of very simple ingredients that become a tremendous sauce through the proper application of heat. Just don't blast either the flour mixture, or the milk, with heat higher than medium, and you should be good. TAKE YOUR TIME, and don't pump up the heat to speed it up. Your patience will be rewarded with a luscious velvety sauce.
- 12 lasagna noodles
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 heads fresh broccoli, chopped
- 2 carrots, thinly sliced
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 2 small zucchini, sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 cups milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon fresh nutmeg
- 3⁄4 cup parmesan cheese, divided
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
- 1 (8 ounce) container small curd cottage cheese
- 24 ounces ricotta cheese
- 2 1⁄2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded, divided
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Grease a 9 x 13 inch casserole dish.
- Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add lasagna noodles and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
- Heat oil in a large skillet or dutch oven over medium heat. When oil is hot add broccoli, carrots, onions, bell peppers, zucchini and garlic. Saute for 7 minutes; set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, heat the butter over medium-low heat until melted.
- Add the flour and stir until smooth. Over medium heat, cook until the mixture turns a light, golden sandy color, about 6 to 7 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat the milk in a separate pan until just about to boil.
- Ladle the hot milk to the butter mixture 1 cup at a time, whisking continuously until very smooth. Bring to a boil.
- Cook 10 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Stir in 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper; cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly, then remove from heat.
- Remove from heat; stir in nutmeg and spinach. (Make sure you squeeze all moisture from the spinach). Reserve 1/2 cup spinach mixture.
- In a small bowl combine cottage and ricotta cheeses; stir well.
- Spread about 1/2 cup of spinach mixture in the bottom of the prepared pan.
- Layer noodles, ricotta mixture, vegetables, spinach mixture and 2 cups mozzarella cheese, ending with noodles. Top with reserved spinach mixture, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup parmesan cheese.
- Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes, or until lightly browned on top.
- Cool for approximately 10 minutes before serving.