Recipe of the Week: Dorina's Rainbow Lasagna

I've been hunting down creative ways to use winter produce and get the best bang for our buck from vegetables at the farmer's market. It's all part of our quest to eat local and organic as much as possible. I was inspired by a recipe I saw in Sunset magazine for a Butternut Squash & Kale Lasagna. Of course, I love to read lots of recipes to get ideas and then come up with my own. Here's a new fave in our household - quite a twist on the classic lasagna. I like it because it uses whole wheat noodles but the whole wheat taste doesn't dominate the flavor. Let us know what you think!

Dorina's Rainbow Lasagna

3 tablespoons olive oil
olive oil spray
1/2 red onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 29-oz. can chopped or crushed tomatoes (I used Trader Joe's organic chopped tomatoes.)
1 t. oregano
1 t. basil
1 t. chopped bay leaf
1 t. salt
1 t. black pepper
4 cups butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (Trader Joe's sells it already cubed in the refrigerator section if you don't have time to cut one up.)
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 bunch purple kale
8 oz. mushrooms, sliced (I used the classic white mushrooms.)
1 package whole wheat lasagna noodles (We found a new Ronzoni brand & they were great!)
1 15-oz. container ricotta cheese (Trader Joe's brand is good if you don't have a local Italian market where they sell it fresh.)
3 cups shredded mozarella cheese

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. For sauce: Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add red onion and garlic and cook until onions is soft and translucent (approx. 5 minutes). Add tomatoes and spices. Reduce heat and simmer about 30 minutes while preparing the rest of the lasagna.
3. While sauce is cooking, spray a cookie sheet (the kind with sides) with olive oil spray. Put cubed butternut squash on the cookie sheet. Drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon maple syrup. Bake until soft (approx. 10-15 minutes).
4. Meanwhile, bring 3 quarts salted water to boil in a large pot for the noodles.
5. Tear kale leaves from center ribs and discard ribs. Chop kale into thin ribbons.
6. Slice mushrooms.
7. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water until tender. (Check package for timing - usually aobut 10 minutes).
8. Coat the bottom of a 9x13 pan with tomato sauce (approx. 1 cup). Layer lasagna noodles over sauce. Top noodles with 1/3 squash, kale and mushrooms. Add 1/3 of ricotta cheese. Sprinkle with 1 cup mozarella cheese.
9. Repeat step 8 until all ingredients are gone. The top layer should be the mozarella cheese.
10. Bake lasagna until juices bubble and cheese is melted and starting to brown at the edges of the pan (approx. 30 minutes). Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes before serving.

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