I love my husband. (I did have to get that out of the way)
He is a very sharp and observant individual…some may remember his nickname (one of many) as Anal Al.
We know “things” about one another and we agree on things about us. For example, neither one of us remembers when we got married. It is the truth….we just don’t care. I know when he was born and in return he remembers the glorious day when I was born. He knows I am allergic to fresh coconut and I know he hates olives, salmon and beets. I love his perfect blue eyes…he on the other hand has no clue what color my eyes are….this is where it all went wrong for Mr. Man.
Quick story, Matt was in charge of getting our fishing licenses. Job done! At dinner, that night he tells me (quite casually) that when he was buying the licenses the gentleman asked him about my eye color. He says: “I wasn’t sure so I said brown. That OK, right?” Total silence at the table. Both girls are starring at me, unable to utter a word…..”OK? OK? NO, it’s not OK. My eyes are green, dark green…only green.” One would think that he would simply apologize and beg for forgiveness…no not my guy. He argues with me about the color, like I haven’t taken one good look in the mirror for the past 41 years!
To this day, he will still argue that my eyes are not green, actually now he has moved to the “not completely” green.
I also know he likes pasta with vegetables…I can always tell by the look in his eyes…his BLUE eyes!
Zucchini, Mushrooms & Spinach Lasagne. (Inspired by Art Smith’s Spring Vegetable Lasagne. Back to the Table: The Reunion of Food and Family)
For the sauce:
4 slices bacon cut into bite size pieces (optional)
6 tablespoons butter
1/2 onion diced
3 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
3 cups warm milk (heat in microwave to warm up)
For the vegetable filling:
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 onion diced (I had a red onion but any will work)
1 zucchini diced
1 8-ounce package mushrooms sliced
4 cups (packed) fresh spinach
For the assembly:
1 pound fresh mozzarella sliced thinly (or you could use shredded if you prefer)
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
12 ounces lasagna noodles (I like the no-boil kind but if you prefer the boil kind simply cook according to direction on side of box but do not over cook, keep them very al dente)
You must first make your sauce. In a large pot, cook your bacon until crisp but not burnt. Remove to a plate lined with paper towels. Set aside. Drain bacon fat from pot but do not wash it. Add your butter (6 tablespoons) melt and then add your onions. Cook on medium heat until soft and fragrant. Add your flour and mix well. Let this cook for another 3-4 minutes. It will cook off the flour taste. Add your warm milk and fresh thyme and bring back to a boil. Cook for another 5-10 minutes until nice and thick. Turn heat to low to keep warm while getting the vegetables ready. If you are good at multi-tasking you can make the vegetables at the same time….for me it all depends on whether I am drinking wine or not!
For the vegetables, in a large pan melt your butter (2 tablespoons). Add your onions. Cook for 2-3 minutes then add your zucchinis and mushrooms. Cook for another 4-5 minutes. Finally add your spinach (you may want to chop it or leave it whole). Mix everything well and turn the heat off. The spinach does not need to cook completely because it will finish in the oven.
Turn your oven to 350F
Butter a 9X13 pan. At the bottom of your pan pour about 1/2 cup of your sauce. Top with a layer of lasagna noodles, then 1/3 of your sauce, 1/3 of vegetable mixture and 1/3 of sliced mozzarella. Follow with next 1/3 of each and again with last 1/3. On your final cheese layer top with cooked bacon (if using) and then your Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil and put in your preheated oven for 40 minutes. Uncover and cook for another 10 minutes or until nice and golden.
Mine (as always with crushed red peppers and more Parmesan cheese!)
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Peace and GREEN eyes!
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