Yes, I know. The name is extremely clichéd and you wouldn’t have expected it from me, being Italian and all that. I have to say, though, that in my defence this is an original creation of mine and, as such, deserves a creative name. What with it being a lasagna made with ricotta and courgettes, the name came by itself. Also, ‘lasagnotta’ sounds particularly cute in Italian.
Right, the concept behind this recipe is that I had some courgettes and some ricotta in the fridge. I had read somewhere that you could make a good lasagna out of it, but as I did not recall neither where I had read it (I devour food literature) nor how much of each, I decided to improvise. The result is very good and I am particularly proud of it. Please feel free to adapt the recipe, I used all the little pieces of leftover cheese I found in my fridge, but you are more than welcome to stick to just one variety. I also think a very good addition to the lot would be smoked salmon, as it goes really well with courgettes and cream.
- 3 courgettes
- 4 spring onions
- 1 x 250g tub of ricotta
- 100ml sour cream
- 6 lasagna sheets – check how big your oven dish is before deciding how many you need!
- 100g full-fat cream cheese
- 100g mixed grated cheese (I used goat’s and standard cheddar)
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- salt and pepper, to taste
- olive oil
- Parmesan, to taste
- Finely grate the courgettes and slice the spring onions. Warm some oil in a frying pan, tumble in the vegetables and cook over a medium heat, stirring regularly, for about 20 minutes. The vegetables should have softened but not turned into a mushy mixture. Halfway through the cooking time, add a pinch of salt and grate some black pepper.
- Meanwhile, boil some water in a kettle and pour it into the tin you will use for the lasagna. Add a drizzle of olive oil and slowly plunge the lasagna sheets in the boiling water. Leave for about 7 minutes or until softened. Alternatively, you can boil them for about 5 minutes. Once softened, arrange on a plate and brush with olive oil to avoid them sticking to one another.
- Now prepare the ricotta sauce. In a bowl, mix the ricotta, cream cheese, sour cream and the mixed grated cheese to obtain a slightly dense but soft mixture. Add the paprika and chilli powder and mix that in.
- Once the courgettes are cooked, start layering your lasagna. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
- Use about one third of the courgette mixture to spread on the base of the oven dish, then top that with a layer of lasagna sheets (3, in my case). Spread about half of the ricotta mixture, then top scatter another third of the courgette mixture. Cover with a second layer of lasagna sheets, then repeat the ricotta mixture and the courgette one to complete.
- Grate some Parmesan on top, then cover the oven dish with some foil and bake for about 30 minutes.