Meatless Monday: Creamy sweet potato & asparagus lasagna
This is a veggie-based lasagna that won't have you seeing red. A creamy white sauce and cheese mixture bring on the rich flavors of this pasta dish.
This Meatless Monday recipe for creamy sweet potato and asparagus lasagna is a true treat for the senses. This recipe will have you on your toes until you're ready to bake the lasagna, but it's easy to make, and you'll enjoy the unique flavors included in this pasta dish.
You're probably used to seeing red when you make lasagna, even if it's a vegetarian version. Check this out: I've swapped the red sauce for a creamy béchamel and a rich ricotta and mozzarella mixture. Can you say cheesy? I just love how the sweet potatoes and asparagus add to the rich flavors and color of this meatless lasagna.
Creamy sweet potato and asparagus lasagna recipe
- 1 large (or 2 small) sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced into thin rounds
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small bunch asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 1 cup)
- 12 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, divided
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2-1/2 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups milk
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon dried sage
- 3/4 pound lasagna noodles
- 1 tablespoon butter, cut into 12 small pieces
- Nonstick cooking spray
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Place the sweet potato slices on the baking sheets, and drizzle with the olive oil. Bake for about 15 minutes or until the potatoes have softened. Remove from the oven, and set them aside.
- Add about 1/8 cup of water to a large microwave-safe bowl. Add the asparagus pieces, and steam them in the microwave for about 1 minute. Drain the asparagus, and set it aside.
- Mix together the ricotta cheese, egg, a 1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese, the Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Mix well, and refrigerate until ready to use.
- In a medium-size saucepan over medium heat, add the butter. When it's melted, slowly whisk in the flour until smooth. This will become the béchamel sauce.
- Gradually add the milk to the mixture, whisking. Continue to cook the mixture, whisking constantly, for about 10 minutes or until it's thick (it should easily coat the back of a spoon).
- Remove from the stovetop, and whisk in the garlic, nutmeg and sage. Set aside to cool completely. As the béchamel cools, cook the lasagna noodles according to the package directions, then drain.
- Lightly spray an 8 x 12-inch baking dish with the nonstick cooking spray. Spread a medium-thick layer of the béchamel sauce evenly over the bottom of the baking dish. Place 1 layer of noodles on top of the sauce. Spread a layer of the ricotta mixture over the noodles, followed by a layer of 1/2 the sweet potato slices and 1/2 the asparagus, and then dot with a few spoons of béchamel sauce.
- Add another layer of noodles, a layer of ricotta and the remaining vegetables, and then dot with the remaining béchamel.
- Finish with the remaining noodles, and evenly sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese over them. Dot with the pieces of butter.
- Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil, and bake for about 30 minutes. Remove the foil, and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes or until the top is golden.
- Remove the lasagna from the oven, and allow it to cool slightly before cutting and serving.
Dig into a creamy lasagna.