Green Lasagna w/ Spinach & Mushrooms

   

Back in August my parents gave me a generous gift card to Williams Sonoma, and I finally got around to spending some of it over the weekend. One of the things I knew I wanted to get was a small baking dish suitable for making reduced portions of tasty baked entrees like macaroni and cheese or enchiladas. I pretty much only ever cook for 2-3 people and since we try to mind how much we eat, making a massive casserole dish of cheesy carby crack is a dangerous idea. We either end up eating seconds (ahem.. thirds) or having too many leftovers the following day. Getting a smaller dish means each of us gets a reasonable amount of food with no temptation for trips back to the kitchen and no wasted food. Obviously I needed to put my new purchase to use, and what better way to break it in than by making a lasagna!

 

I must confess that I’ve never been a huge fan of traditional lasagna, simply because I’m not a fan of ricotta cheese. Of course there are eleventy billion variations of the dish that you can make that don’t require ricotta, and those are usually fine by me. Whenever I’ve made entrees that call for ricotta I generally prefer to use tofu as a substitution. That’s what I did in my green lasagna last night, but if you’re one of those people that has an intense fear of tofu you could go with what you know and incorporate ricotta into the recipe in its place. I will say though, that this dish is really ideal for experimenting with tofu – particularly if you have little experience with cooking it. It’s blended with mascarpone cheese and spinach to form a smooth, creamy filling that goes nicely with layers of pasta and melted cheese. When you make the sauce there will be some leftover. There are a lot of ways to use it but here is one idea to get you started: Quick Low Calorie Flatbread. In the meantime…

Green Lasagna w/ Spinach & Mushrooms
Serves 3
A yummy and slightly healthier deviation from traditional lasagna.
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
50 min
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  2. 1/2 onion, diced
  3. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  4. 1 8oz package of mushrooms, chopped
  5. 1 tablespoon minced sun dried tomatoes
  6. 3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  7. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  8. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  9. 1/2 package firm tofu
  10. 3 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
  11. 5 ounces light cream cheese (I used 5 wedges of flavored laughing cow because I had some around)
  12. 1 cup frozen chopped spinach, cooked and drained
  13. 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  14. 1 small clove garlic
  15. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  16. 10 lasagna noodles (or whatever quantity is enough to make five layers in the baking dish of your choice)
  17. 4 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded
  18. 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Follow package instructions for parboiling your lasagna noodles prior to baking. In my case I boiled 10 noodles for 4 minutes. Cut the noodles to fit your baking dish and set aside.
  3. Heat olive oil over medium heat and cook onions and garlic until slightly translucent. Add chopped mushrooms, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1/4 teaspoon of pepper, and cover for 5-7 minutes.
  4. When mushrooms have released their juices and are soft, stir in the sundried tomatoes and 3 tablespoons of grated parmesan. Remove from heat.
  5. In a food processor pulse the tofu, mascarpone cheese, cream cheese, drained spinach, fresh basil, garlic, and half a teaspoon of salt until well combined but not so much as to make it too smooth. A little bit of texture is nice here.
  6. Fold the cooked mushrooms into tofu mixture. Add a little more salt and pepper here if you like. Some dried oregano would be nice here as well but I was out.
  7. In a greased baking dish spread a layer of the filling along the bottom then top with one layer of noodles. Repeat another layer in the same way. For the third layer use half of your mozzarella cheese as the filling. Do the last two layers as normal with the filling, ending with a layer of the filling on top. Sprinkle remaining mozzarella cheese and parmesan over the top.
  8. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes, then remove the foil and bake for another 20. If needed broil the cheese a little at the end.
Calories
  1. 527
Notes
  1. Caloric information will vary depending on the size of your dish and the amount of sauce that you use. I cut down my noodles a fair amount to fit into my dish and had about 1/4-1/3 of the filling leftover that I used in a low calorie lunch pizza a couple of days later. The recipe can be found here.
Gouda Monster http://www.goudamonster.com/


4 comments on “Green Lasagna w/ Spinach & Mushrooms”

  1. RoslynnBailey says:

    I see that (and you mention that) you used a smaller dish.  What are the dimensions of the dish you are using?

    1. Gouda Monster says:

      The dish I used is about the size of a bread pan – perhaps a little wider and more shallow. I went into the kitchen to measure it but it seems to be hiding from me at the moment! It’s one of the rectangular baking dishes by Le Creuset.

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