Saturday, November 10, 2007

John's Thanksgiving Pumpkin Lasagna

Thanksgiving Pumpkin Lasagna is an excellent vegetarian fall casserole. It also makes a beautiful presentation and is relatively easy to prepare.

My good friend John emailed this recipe to me. At first I kind of wrinkled my nose... pumpkin? In lasagna? That didn't sound too appetizing, at least not to my "very-slowly-evolving-frugal-foodie" palate.

Then, I thought... Hey, why not? I mean heck, I had pumpkin puree that I had frozen last year, and I really needed to use that stuff... I mean how long are you supposed to freeze pumpkin puree anyway? Probably not from one Thanksgiving to the next, but we'll pretend it wasn't that long!

The recipe also called for spinach... and I'm all about some spinach, especially if I can find a way to get my picky husband to eat it. I'm also trying to incorporate more vegetarian meals into our weekly menu. I mean seriously, especially in our American diet, we could all use a couple more servings of vegetables a week!

So we made John's Pumpkin Lasagna. Don't be intimidated by the long list of ingredients: You'll notice some of the same ingredients in the layer sections which I separated to make preparations easier. This lasagna is very good. I think next time I may even add curry powder to the pumpkin to give it more "kick." I'm also tempted to simply cook fresh pumpkin and use "fork-tender" pumpkin cubes in the casserole as opposed to mashed or pureed. If I were vegetarian, I think this would be a great main dish at Thanksgiving. Mary Frances or Sea, I'd love for you to give this a shot with your own personal variations and tell me what you think!

Just one little hint... take your time in making this... as Monk would say, "You'll thank me later!"

John's Thanksgiving Pumpkin Lasagna

  • 1 package gluten-free lasagna noodles, precooked according to package directions
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup cream

Spinach layer ingredients:

  • 1-2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1-2 lbs. frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. dried sage
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg

Pumpkin layer ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. dried sage
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg

Ricotta layer

  • 1 (16 oz.) container ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg


1. In a large non-stick frying pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook until translucent (about 5 minutes).
2. Add defrosted, drained spinach to onions. Add salt, pepper, sage, and nutmeg. Simmer until nearly all liquid from spinach has evaporated. Set aside.
3. Heat oven to 400 degrees.
4. In a medium bowl mix all ingredients for pumpkin layer together and set aside.
5. In a small bowl mix ricotta cheese and egg together and set aside.
6. Pour 1/4 cup milk into 9x11 baking dish. Top milk with 1/3 of GF lasagna noodles. Spread 1/2 of the pumpkin mixture on top of lasagna noodles. Top pumpkin mixture with 1/2 of spinach mixture. Top spinach mixture with 1/2 of ricotta mixture. Repeat layers.
7. Mix remaining pumpkin and cream together. Pour over top of lasagna. Sprinkle with remaining parmesan cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 15 minutes until parmesan cheese topping is golden brown and talking to ya' (bubbling).
8. If you can possibly wait, let cool for 5-10 minutes. Stop salivating, plate up, and eat.


Check back tomorrow for my gluten-free weekly menu!
This week Karen, at Gluten-Free Sox, will be hosting!

Pin It!