Squash the squash!

I have a produce subscription this summer (from here), and I find myself with a lot of yellow squash these days. Matt won’t eat it, and I’m trying to find different ways of preparing it.

Enter 3-cheese squash lasagna! This is a modified recipe from a slightly weird magazine, Vegetarian Times. I have a subscription to this magazine, but in all honesty, it’s a sympathy subscription (I’m a sucker for young door-to-door sales people). The jury is still out on the recipe quality.

9 lasagna noodles, cooked al dente
3 medium leeks, chopped
2 large yellow squash, sliced thin
chopped fresh mint – optional*
1 lb ricotta cheese
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb fresh spinach, blanched and chopped coarsely
1 large egg, beaten
3/4 c feta cheese, crumbled
1 c mozzarella cheese

Saute leeks in a little olive oil and add the squash. Saute until squash is softened. Add salt and pepper to taste. In a separate bowl, combine ricotta cheese and garlic. Stir in spinach and egg.

Heat oven to 350 F. Coat a 9×13 pan in cooking spray. Layer noodles (3 per level), squash mix (1/3 of total), and ricotta mix (1/3 of total). Sprinkle 2 T of feta cheese. Repeat layers of noodles, squash, and ricotta, ending with ricotta. Sprinkle with remaining feta and mozzarella.

Cover the pan with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 5 minutes. Let stand a few minutes before slicing and serving.

It made a lot of lasagna. I couldn’t eat all of it (and of course, Matt refused to eat any of it), and I ultimately will be throwing about 1/4 of the pan in the compost pile. It tasted “just OK” (see my footnote on mint), and it would have been much better if I had used a different herb – maybe basil? Dill?

* The recipe called for 1/3 c of chopped fresh mint to be added to the squash after it was sauteed. One-third of a cup is a lot of mint. I reduced it to just over 1 T, and I thought the flavor was very strong. I am not a fan of mint (I like it in toothpaste, Andes chocolates, and Girl Scout cookies, but nothing else). I was not crazy about minty lasagna.

10 thoughts on “Squash the squash!

  1. Ohhh…minty lasagna. Um, yeah. I thought that the recipe looked really good, but I agree that marjoram or basil would have been waaaay better. Save the mint for iced tea or Vietnamese salad rolls – that’s what I grow my mint for!

  2. You’re braver than I am. My mint tolerance list exactly matches yours and had I seen that in the recipe (which otherwise sounds pretty good!) I would have had a hearty laugh and, after I’d wiped mt eyes and gotten my breath back, substituted…probably…oregano πŸ™‚

  3. I’m glad I’m not the only one who has been suckered into subscriptions. That’s a good description of it, a “sympathy subscription”. And yeah, that’s weird about the mint. The recipe sounds good, and sounds as though some herb flavoring would be good, but — mint?

  4. Maybe a smidge of fresh mint and a correspondingly large quantity of fresh basil? I’m thinking about the mint in tabbouleh — essentially a savory dish — and how it is nice there. But it would have to be subtle.

    You put feta and ricotta in your compost pile? I always read that dairy or meal or fat will attract rodents. Better idea: e-mail that 1/4 pan (or more) to me πŸ™‚

  5. er, mint? No. I’d try sage. Nice with squash and cheese. Alternatively coriander and cumin and stuff like that, but sage would be my first choice.

    Mint is good on zucchini/courgettes, though. Baby ones, in chunks cooked in butter and their own juices.

  6. I have some wayward squash that need a home…do you think that basil instead of mint, and some parmesan in the ricotta would cure it? And what was your opinion on the feta in the lasagna?

  7. Mint in lasagna? Very odd. I’m pretty sure I’d substitute basil or marjoram for that.

    I’ve had a subscription to VT a couple different times and I don’t think I cooked out of it more than a handful of times.

  8. I’m a vegetarian who gave up on the Vegetarian Times. I have their cookbook and everyone I know who has tried their receipes has been disappointed. The recipes look promising but never turn out to be something you’d want to make again.

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