13 October, 2010

Three Sisters Lasagna

Look who was stuck to my screen by nothing but a breeze!

It’s fall for sure and this got me thinking about Thanksgiving and gardening and all kinds of stuff. There’s been a lot of talk on the internet lately about “The Three Sisters”: corn, beans, and squash.

I had some leftover lasagna noodles from the Food Not Bombs thing on Sunday, some black beans that I had soaked overnight fro no particular reason, some random vegan cheese, and about 4 pounds of carnival squash from my CSA so I decided to do some kitchen improv.

First a picture, then the recipe:

I'm glad this plate is fianlly appropiate.

Serves . . . . a bunch. . . maybe 8

2 lbs carnival squash (or whatever)
1t pumpkin pie spice
1/4 c milk
salt and pepper
2 cups black beans (post-soak volume)
6c water
1/2t cayenne
1/2t cumin
1/4t garlic powder
1 bay leaf
1/4c butter 
1/4c flour
3.5c milk 
2t Emeril's Southwestern Seasoning
1 package no-boil lasagna noodles
1c frozen corn
appx. 1/2c cheddar cheese
appx. 1/2c mozzarella cheese
appx. 1/4c parmesan (I used my own home-made stuff)

1. Preheat your oven to 375*. Cut the squash in half, seed them and place them, cut side down on a rimmed baking dish lined with parchment paper. Bake for an hour or until tender.

2. At the same time, add the beans, water, cayenne, cumin, garlic powder and bay leaf to a pan. bring to a boil then drop down to a simmer for about an hour or until the beans are tender. add more water as necessary to keep the beans covered (I didn't need to add any).

3. Meanwhile, Melt the butter in a heavy bottomed sauce pan. Sprinkle in the flour and whisk until smooth. Slowly whisk in the milk. Keep whisking until the sauce thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 15 min(?). Once it's thick enough, turn off the heat and add the SW seasoning. Taste it, see if you like it. It should be creamy and just a little spicy.  Set aside to cool.

4. When the squash is done scoop out the flesh and put it in a blender with the pumpkin pie spice, milk, and a little salt and pepper. Blend until smooth, taste, adjust seasonings to your liking. set aside.

5. When the beans are done, drain any excess water and set aside.

6. Now we build: In a 9x13 pan, put 3/4c of the sauce. put on a layer of noodles.
        Spread 1/2 the squash evenly on top
        1/2 cup more sauce.
        another layer of noodles
        spread out the beans and corn next
        1/2 cup more sauce
        cheddar cheese (I found the sliced kind and I used 5 slices)
        the rest of the squash
        1/2 cup sauce
        remainder of the sauce
        mozzarella and parmesan
7. Cover with foil and bake in a 400* oven for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake 15 more minutes. I like my lasagna kind of crispy on top and dry around the edges which is why the baking time is so long. If you like your lasagna softer just shorten the uncovered time to your liking.

I made this in the morning and stowed it in the fridge for the day and had Mr. Crow throw it in the oven just before I got home from work. The house smelled AMAZING and I got to eat dinner right away! It was spicy and sweet and creamy and so delish! I don't usually pull "real" recipes out of my ear like this so I'm kind of anxious to have someone make this. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

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