Fresh lasagne with pesto

Fresh lasagne with pesto

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(23 ratings)

By

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Cooking time

Ready in about 1¾ hours

Skill level

Moderately easy

Servings

Serves 6

This veggie pasta dish is perfect for entertaining - it can be made ahead, leaving you free to chat to your guests

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Vegetarian
Nutrition info

Nutrition

kcalories
711
protein
38g
carbs
46g
fat
43g
saturates
25g
fibre
4g
sugar
0g
salt
2.5g

Ingredients

  • 1.2l milk
  • 100g butter, cut into pieces
  • 100g plain flour
  • pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 500g baby spinach leaves
  • 250g lasagne sheets – fresh is best
  • 3 rounded tbsp good quality pesto
  • 500g cherry tomatoes on the vine, two or three vines left whole
  • good handful of basil leaves (or one supermarket pack)
  • 175g piece fresh parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), coarsely grated
  • 2 x 150g balls mozzarella, preferably buffalo, torn into bite-sized pieces

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Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6/fan 180C. Put the milk, butter and flour in a medium pan and cook over a medium heat, whisking until thickened and smooth. Simmer for 1 minute. Take off the heat, season and add the nutmeg. Cool, stirring occasionally to stop a skin forming.
  2. Put the spinach in a large heatproof bowl, pour over a kettle of boiling water and leave for 30 seconds. Drain into a colander, cool under the cold tap then squeeze it well to remove the excess liquid.
  3. Spread a spoonful or two of the sauce on the bottom of a large ovenproof dish (about 30x20cm) and lay a third of the lasagne on top. Spoon over a third of the sauce and spread it out. Swirl a spoonful of pesto through the sauce with a knife and scatter over half the spinach with a third of the tomatoes, a few basil leaves and a third of the cheeses. Season with salt and pepper. Layer another third of the lasagne with a third of the sauce, a spoonful of pesto, the rest of the spinach, a third of the tomatoes and cheeses and some basil. Season.
  4. Finish with a layer of lasagne, the last of the sauce, pesto, cheeses and the tomatoes, including those on the vine. Bake for 35-40 minutes until golden. Scatter with the last of the basil leaves and serve.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, September 2002

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Comments

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2rachel6's picture
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Just made this for the family (mixed vegetarian and meat-lovers) and everyone finished their plates. Very indulgent and creamy (I made the sauce quite thick) so a refreshing side salad was needed, but it made 6 portions as stated with the salad and garlic bread on the side. I didn't have enough spinach so added peas and thinly sliced sweet potato which needed to be used up and it worked just as well. I'll definitely be making this again

crazymothercooker's picture
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Really enjoyed this - makes a nice change from normal meat lasagne and is quick and easy. Will definitely be making this again!

joanna_kelly3's picture
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This recipe is absolutely gorgeous. Make sure you use a bigger dish than they suggest - there's a lot to pack in! Will definitely make this for special occasions and the odd dinner party - very rich and decadent!

levislevis's picture
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really lovely
i used 75g cheddar instead of parmesan, and reduced the milk to 100ml and found this combination perfect.
definately a keeper

pilchy's picture
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Absolutely delicious recipe I do like to make a lasagne and I find the veggie ones real tasty. Will most definately make again

neliban's picture
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left me a bit uninspired...

magicgirl123's picture

I'm planning on making this but I'm struggling to find vegetarian parmesan. So any ideas of what I could use instead of parmesan and the vegetarian kind would be great. Thanks

2247juliew's picture

bit late replying but Bookhams online do a really good veggie parmesan.

foodlover81's picture
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gorgeous veggie dinner, everybody i've served this to has asked for the recipe!

meglam's picture
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Delicious, have made this a few times now. Last time I added some cubed chicken breasts to satisfy the meat lovers. I saw the comments about it being too runny, I usually use less milk, to prevent that. But then you have to make the white sauce in the old fashioned way.

bean_mother's picture
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Forgot to rate...

bean_mother's picture
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Tasty and comforting! Didn't have enough spinach so added chopped courgette and broccoli which was lovely with the cheese. It was a bit too runny for my liking so will adjust the white sauce next time I make it.

dpclough's picture
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Wow! Great dish! Much easier to 'construct' that you'd think. Looks impressive. Turned out well. A hit with all the family.

laureana's picture
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this was gorgeous, very runny, but delicious non the less. i cant remember the last time we ate spinach, but it went down a storn. i didnt have any parmasan so just used strong chedder on the top. this will definatly be a regular meal in our house now. yum!! oh but i gound that i didnt use as much spinach as it says in the recipe, but still was amazing. as mon-gella says it tastes so much better than you think and definatly worth the effort!!!

haedir's picture
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This is a far more spectacular result in terms of taste and appearance than you think it's going to be. Fresh pesto gives the best possible result. Meat lovers won't even know that the meat is missing. Very rich, therefore smaller than normal portions are ample. Is one of my favourites...

haedir's picture
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This is a far more spectacular result in terms of taste and appearance than you think it's going to be. Fresh pesto gives the best possible result. Meat lovers won't even know that the meat is missing. Very rich, therefore smaller than normal portions are ample. Is one of my favourites...

georgeb74's picture
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Really gorgeous - even my 2 year old loved it! Haven't made a white sauce in that way before, ie putting the butter, flour and milk in a pan all at the same time (usually make a roux) but it worked brilliantly! Will def make it this way again. Gorgeous dinner party meal - will def make again!

nicolarogers's picture
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Lovely flavours and looked fantastic when it came out of the oven. However, it was a little too runny when served up and just looked a mess on the plates. For this reason I probably wouldn't serve it at a dinner party.

wendypatterson's picture
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Wow - what a gorgeous dish. Very easy to make and very tasty. I added more than a pinch of nutmeg and will season the sauce a little more next time. It is very rich and I think it needs something firm to counterbalance the very soft texture. Might try adding a layer of vegetables next time to add a little bite.I served it with roast potates and whole carrots which worked very well.

gdcolledge's picture

An excellent lasagne cooked for a dinner party. Although quite rich, everyone loved it. Made it in advance and reheated it - it was fine. Next time I'd probably add more nutmeg to the sauce. Used dried basil as I didn't have the fresh - it was still delicious.

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