Mushroom, Leek and Three Cheese Lasagne
Rich, robust and meat-free, this vegetarian lasagne consisting of layers of soft pasta, oozy cheeses and a variety of mushrooms is injected with loads of flavour. It can be made in advance and will feed quite a few hungry diners. A light salad of mixed green leaves is all you need to serve on the side. This recipe is a labour of love and well worth the effort.
50g porcini mushrooms, soaked for ½ hr then drained
900g mix of mushrooms – Swiss brown, oyster, enoki, field – roughly chopped
140g fresh lasagne sheets (or enough for 3 layers in your baking dish)
250gm fresh mozzarella, roughly torn
150gm pecorino, finely grated
150gm parmesan, finely grated
1 large leek, cut into a large dice
Small bunch fresh thyme leaves, stem removed
Small bunch sage leaves, roughly chopped
Zest of 1 lemon
1 clove of garlic, crushed
Ground black pepper
1½ cups vegetable stock
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ small leek, finely chopped
3 tbs butter
4 tbs plain flour
1. After you have soaked the porcini mushrooms, heat a large frypan on medium and add the olive oil. Add the mushrooms and gently fry until starting to soften, approx. 4 minutes. Add the lemon zest, garlic, thyme, salt & pepper to taste and stir. Add the white wine and stock and simmer for a further 5 minutes. Remove from the stove and set aside.
2. To make the bechamel, heat a saucepan on medium. Add the butter and as it melts add the leek and stir until softened but not browned. Add in the flour and stir quickly so it doesn’t burn. Gradually and slowly add the milk, whisking as you go. The lumps will disappear and the sauce will start to thicken. Keep the saucepan on the heat as you whisk and when it is a thick and smooth consistency remove from the heat and set aside.
3. Heat the oven to 180°C.
To assemble the lasagne, you need a large baking tray. Place the lasagne sheets in a single layer on the bottom. Using a slotted spoon, add a layer of the mushrooms, straining off the liquid as this will make the lasagne too wet. Sprinkle a layer of the parmesan and pecorino and some pieces of torn mozzarella. Repeat 2 more times so you have 3 layers.
4. Give the bechamel a little stir, then pour an even layer over the top of the lasagne. Sprinkle more parmesan and pecorino over the top which will help brown the top of the lasagne as it bakes. Bake in the oven for 50 minutes and serve while hot.
Dana Sims is a Sydney-based food and prop stylist who has grown up in the Eastern Suburbs and loves to create delicious food for entertaining and family. She is inspired by the fresh produce we have access to here in Sydney. For ideas, recipes and styling inspiration, check out her Instagram, @stone_and_twine