Herbed Lasagna – Slightly Guilty
We are done with one major part of the festive season, well, at least in this part of the Asian continent. And, while we gear up for the next one to hit us in about a month and a half; I like to pack in some ‘healthy’ food until I start stuffing my face again.
But in the same breath, I am not one to go for healthy food while compromising on taste. Also, a lot of ingredients that I consider healthy may not meet the Nazi dietician’s standards. Now I am no authority on “diet” food or the specifics that goes into “healthy” food, but I would like to think (and I know), I am brilliant when it comes to what tastes good.
So, I guess when I talk about health food, I could have the ‘flagbearers of what not to eat’ swoop down on me like vultures, but genuinely I don’t really care. So here goes my recipe for a baked (tick), lasagna, with tons of herbs (tick), a bit of seafood (tick), and lovely thick sauce that is vegan (tick). In short relatively “healthy” food with dollops of taster to tantalize your taste buds. Trust me, this won’t disappoint you. In fact, you will totally fall in love with this recipe. Hell, I fed it to my father who has an aversion to any, I mean ANY vegetable that is green in colour. So, rest assured and get to making this now!
Mixed fresh green vegetables – 1 big bowl
Oyster mushrooms – 1 cup (soaked for about 10 minutes)
Onions – 2nos (finely chopped)
Garlic – 2tbsp (finely chopped)
Peas – 3/4th cup
Sweet corn kernels – ½ cup
Shrimp – 1 cup (deveined)
Pasta sheets – 6nos
Milk – 1 cup
Cumin powder – 2tsp
Oregano – 1tsp
Rosemary – 1tsp
Parsley – 1tbsp (fresh, chopped)
Salt and pepper – for seasoning
Cheddar cheese – 2 cups (grated)
Butter – 4tbsp
Sugar – 1tsp
- First, let’s make the cheese sauce. For the sauce, in a thick bottomed pan, add the butter. Once the butter melt, add the milk gently.
- Once the milk has almost come to boil, add 3/4th cup of cheese. Stir well, let the cheese melt and let the milk and the cheese become a nice thick sauce, all on a low flame and make sure you stir the sauce from time to time. Add the sugar, taste the sauce and add the seasoning. Set aside. Sauce is done.
- Now for the vegetables and shrimp. In a pan, heat the remaining butter. Once the pan is hot, just flash fry the shrimp for about 3 seconds. Take out the shrimp and set aside.
- In the same pan, add the garlic. Let it brown and then add the onions. Cook them until translucent.
- Now add the corn and the mushrooms and cook them for about 3 minutes. Now add the peas and the rest of the greens.
- Add seasoning and the oregano, rosemary, cumin powder and seasoning stir well and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes until the greens are cooked. Once done, add this and the shrimp to the cheese sauce previously made. Stir well.
- Since we aren’t going to bake this for very long, make sure you par cook the pasta sheets.
- Now for the assembly. This is going to be slightly different. First butter up the baking tin. Now lay one layer of pasta sheet.
- Add a layer of the cheese sauce mixture. Add a layer of grated cheese and add another layer of pasta sheets.
- Add another layer of the mixture and cheese and another layer pasta sheets. Top with a final layer of the mixture and cheese.
- Now bake this in a pre-heated oven at 180 degrees for 12 minutes/ until the cheese on the top has browned.
- Once done, take it out of the oven, let it sit for about 7 to 10 minutes and serve and devour the deliciousness!
- In boiling water seasoned with salt, lay in your pasta sheets and cook for about 3 minutes. Not more.
- Make sure you mix the cheese and the milk to make the cheese sauce, at the lowest flame possible. It takes a bit of patience but so does anything worth waiting for! So, gear up.
- Taste everything at every stage. Remember, cheese has salt, so check, check, check at every stage.
- Yes, I know most people would scorn upon using cheese and seafood, but well, let’s just agree it tastes great. Also, if you want to make a vegetarian version, ditch the shrimp, and you will be just fine.
So there we go, a power packed lasagna. I love it, my dad loves it, my husband loves it! And if 2 of the most difficult and fussy eaters I’ve even known love it, I’m fairly sure you would too. So go ahead, follow me on social media and love it!