I often look at lasagne recipes and decide they:
- serve to many people and are therefore very tricky to modify to one or two serves – and I like lasagne a lot but not enough to eat it every day for the next week, or
- are so high in calories due to their awesome cheesiness, or
- need five gazillion hours to prepare (only a slight exaggeration there).
I nearly didn’t make this kale and baby bella mushroom lasagne as it said it was for 8-10 and Kristine from Kristine’s Kitchen talked about eating it three days in a row which is about a day more than I usually like. But the cook time looked ok and when I put the recipe in to myfitnesspal it told me that the calories were 607 per serve if you make the whole recipe for 8 people so if I made a quarter that would be ok for two serves. It isn’t a meal at the low end of the calorie range but it is ok, particularly if you are aiming at maintaining rather than losing weight.
I also thought it was about time I tried making something with kale. I have been put off the whole superfood and general raving about how wonderful kale is. I didn’t think it could live up to its reputation. Plus I love mushrooms.
I get like that with movies that have rave reviews as well. I find the movie often doesn’t live up to the hype and I walk out disappointed. If I hadn’t heard all the hype I probably would have enjoyed the movie for what it was. I have stopped going to see movies that are so hyped up. I haven’t seen Forrest Gump or Titanic for that reason. Are there any big movies you haven’t seen?
Anyway back to the kale… To be honest I couldn’t really taste the kale in the lasagna. It was hidden in the cheese and other lasagne flavours. Every now and again I would get a hint of it but no huge flavour burst. The hint I did get was a bit bitter to me so I guess I am not about to get on the kale bandwagon any time soon. I think next time I would make this with baby spinach as I have a mountain of that growing in my backyard that I need to use. Who knew it was so easy to grow baby spinach?
The recipe is available here.
To make two serves I used the following ingredients:
- Cooking spray
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- ½ tbs olive oil
- 3 lasagna sheets
- ¼ brown onion
- 60g of baby bella mushrooms but you could also use something like swiss brown if that is what is available
- ¾ tsp of minced garlic
- ¼ tsp of Italian herbs. I am not sure if this is the same as Italian seasoning. My premixed dried herbs have marjoram, rosemary, thyme, sage, savory, oregano and basil in them.
- 2 kale leaves, removed from the stalks, washed, dried and chopped
- 400g of tomato and basil pasta sauce. I used urban spirits tomato and basil sauce which I really like but is probably only available in Australia.
- 110g of fresh ricotta cheese
- 1/5th of a cup of grated parmesan cheese – I used my quarter cup measure and just estimated using that.
- 85g of grated mozzarella cheese (about 2/3rds of a cup)
I almost followed the recipe, except I got a bit confused with the whole layering and put ricotta in with the first layer of sauce before the first layer of noodles. I found the layering a bit tricky. I couldn’t get the ricotta mixture on smoothly above the sauce. Next time I would put the ricotta on top of the noodle and then the sauce on top of that. I also skipped one layer to cut down on the calories.
The lasagne reheated well on the second night and I would make this again switching the kale for another leafy green that I use more regularly such as baby spinach. Mine lasagne didn’t keep it shape the way it does in the original recipe but that doesn’t affect the flavour at all. It is a good healthy meal with vegies hidden in there for those of us who aren’t so partial to the green stuff.
Preparation took about 15 minutes including cooking the lasagne sheets. Once everything is prepared and the sheets cooked, it took about another 25 minutes to get the other ingredients cooked, 5 minutes or so for layering and then 50 minutes cooking in the oven and standing at room temperature. So about 80 minutes cook time and 95 minutes all up so not the quickest meal you will ever make, but quite a bit of time where it is in the oven and you can get on with doing other things.
And if you are curious about whether it is lasagne or lasagna, then the grammarist says North Americans use lasagna whilst other English speakers use lasagne. Lasagna is the singular and lasagne the plural in Italian. I think I use both, depending on what I have been reading. Isn’t it interesting how the English language has evolved in different parts of the world?