Spinach, cherry tomato & buffalo mozzarella lasagne


spinach, cherry tomato & buffalo mozzarella lasagne

Spinach, cherry tomato & buffalo mozzarella lasagne

Spinach, cherry tomato & buffalo mozzarella lasagne

I can’t even begin to describe how delicious and decadent this lasagne is. You should definitely keep it as a treat because calorie-wise, it’s probably quite similar to eating three main meals in one go, followed by a chocolate bar, but it tastes incredible!

Having said that spinach, cherry tomato & buffalo mozzarella lasagne is one of the most unhealthy dinners you’re ever likely to make I would qualify that by pointing out that it does include 2 of your 5 a day and a wealth of calcium! You’ll sleep well after this one!

If you want a vegetarian one just omit the ham.

Spinach, cherry tomato & buffalo mozzarella lasagne

Serves 4
Prep: 20minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 pint of thick-ish white sauce (100g butter, 4 tbsp plain flour, 1 pint of organic semi-skimmed milk)
  • 200g of grated cheddar cheese
  • Pesto
  • 4 good handfuls of fresh spinach – washed and any big stalks removed
  • 16 cherry tomatoes – halved
  • 1 vine of cherry tomatoes
  • 1 large tub of buffalo mozzarella (must be buffalo – don’t get ordinary!)
  • Lasagne sheets
  • 1 packet of parma ham (about 6 strips)
  • Grated parmesan to finish
  • fresh ground black pepper

How to make spinach, cherry tomato & buffalo mozzarella lasagne

1) Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees (fan)

2) Make a thick white sauce by whisking approx. 100g of butter with 3-4 tbsp of flour in a saucepan over a medium hob. Once it’s formed a roux (kind of batter), add a splash of milk, whisk until absorbed, another splash, whisk and so on until you have a nice, smooth, white sauce. Do not allow it to boil or burn, cooking it for ten minutes or so will allow it to thicken and then add in 200g of grated cheese and stir.

[If it doesn’t thicken, I find it best to get a new saucepan out, do another roux with more butter and flour and then instead of adding more milk, slowly add the sauce I’ve already made until it’s the consistency I want.]

3) Boil heavily salted water with a glug of olive oil on the hob and add in your lasagne sheets – break them up so the fit into your lasagne dish first. It’s harder when they’re soft. These usually only need 5 minutes and I do them in batches to avoid sticking. Transfer into cold water, ready to use.

4) Ladle cheese sauce into the lasagne dish – enough to cover the bottom.

5) Take a generous tsp of pesto and swirl it through the cheese sauce.

6) Now scatter on a handful of spinach leaves and half of the halved cherry tomatoes.

7) Break up some of the mozzarella and scatter over the spinach but go easy because it’s got to last another layer and be but on top!

8) Now instead of lasagne, lay on the strips of ham – if using – as if it was another layer.

9) Another layer of cheese sauce, more pesto, more spinach, more tomato, more mozz.

10) Repeat the whole process starting with the pasta: cheese sauce, pesto, last of the spinach, last of the tomatoes, mozz.

11) Another layer of pasta if you have enough. Cover with the remaining cheese sauce (if I’ve got carried away sometimes I have to  make more for this stage). Scatter on the remaining mozz.

12) Now garnish with the full vine of tomatoes, sprinkle with parmesan and black pepper

13) Whack it in the oven for 30 minutes or until the top is bubbling and going golden.

14) Put it to one side for 5 minutes before serving – this allows it to “set” – it’s always a bit liquidy at first.

– Serve with lovely crusty garlic bread and a fresh green salad of rocket, lambs lettuce and baby spinach. Yummmm!

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