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Swiss Chard Lasagna with Mushrooms
Swiss Chard Lasagna with Mushrooms
(Lasagne con Bietola e Funghi)
 
 
Ingredients:

For the Bechamel Sauce:
2 and 1/2 cups whole milk
1 bay leaf
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon (scant) ground nutmeg
Pinch of ground cloves

For the Swiss Chard and Mushroom Layers:
1 pound Swiss chard, center rib and stem cut from each leaf
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 and 1/3 cups chopped onion
4 large garlic cloves, chopped, divided
1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
Coarse kosher salt
1 pound crimini mushrooms, sliced
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the Lasagna:
Nine 7 x 3-inch lasagna noodles
Extra-virgin olive oil
One 15-ounce container whole-milk ricotta cheese, divided
6 ounces Italian Fontina Cheese, coarsely grated (about 1 1/2 cups packed), divided
8 tablespoons finely grated Parmigiano cheese, divided 

Directions:

Prepare the Bechamel Sauce:
Bring milk and bay leaf to simmer in medium saucepan.

Remove from heat.

Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-low heat.

Add flour and whisk to blend.

Cook 2 minutes, whisking almost constantly (do not let roux brown).

Gradually whisk milk with bay leaf into roux.

Add 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, nutmeg, and cloves and bring to simmer.

Cook until sauce thickens enough to coat spoon, whisking often, about 3 minutes.

Remove bay leaf.

Prepare the Swiss Chard and Mushroom Layers:
Blanch chard in large pot of boiling salted water 1 minute.

Drain, pressing out all water, then chop coarsely.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy medium skillet over medium-high heat.

Add onion, half of garlic, and crushed red pepper.

Saute until onion is tender, 3 to 4 minutes.

Mix in chard and season to taste with coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.

Add mushrooms and remaining garlic.

Saute until mushrooms are brown and tender, 7 to 8 minutes.

Mix in nutmeg and season with coarse salt and pepper.

Prepare the Lasagna:
Cook noodles in medium pot of boiling salted water until 'al dente', stirring occasionally.

Drain.

Arrange noodles in single layer on sheet of plastic wrap.

Brush 13 x 9 x 2-inch glass baking dish with olive oil to coat.

Spread 3 tablespoons bechamel sauce thinly over bottom of dish.

Arrange 3 noodles in dish to cover bottom (2 side by side lengthwise, then 1 crosswise).

Spread half of chard mixture over pasta, then half of mushrooms.

Drop half of ricotta over in dollops and spread in even layer.

Sprinkle with half of Fontina cheese, then 4 tablespoons Parmigiano cheese.

Spread 3/4 cup bechamel over.

Repeat layering with 3 noodles, remaining chard, mushrooms, ricotta cheese, Fontina and Parmigiano cheeses, and 3/4 cup bechamel.

Cover with 3 noodles and remaining bechamel.

Preheat oven to 400F.

Bake lasagna covered 30 minutes.

Uncover and bake until heated through and top is golden brown, 20 to 30 minutes longer.

To test for doneness, insert the blade of a small knife deep into the center of the lasagna for 30 seconds. remove the knife and feel the blade. If it's hot, so is the lasagna.

Let stand 15 minutes before serving. Makes 8 servings.

That's it!
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