Pumpkin lasagna isn’t filled with chunks of pumpkin but instead, it’s made with lovely sheets of winter squash noodles and layered with béchamel and 4 kinds of cheese.
I created this hearty yet elegant pumpkin lasagna recipe for a winter dinner party. It’s a classic four-cheese lasagna with a beautiful twist: pumpkin pasta sheets. The subtle flavor and golden hue of the noodles go perfectly with the rich quartet of cheeses: mozzarella, Gorgonzola, Fontina, and Parmigiano. You can serve it as a first course, followed by a simple roast, or as a main course, accompanied by a colorful mixed-lettuce salad. You can count on your guests loving this—but don’t count on leftovers.–Domenica Marchetti
WHAT IS LC HUMP DAY PASTA?
We’re glad you asked. LC Hump Day Pasta (#LCHumpDayPasta) is a little something we cooked up to help you on the night of the week that you feel least like cooking. Wednesday was traditionally Prince Spaghetti Day (for those of you old enough to remember). We’ve revamped and updated that to Hump Day and included every type of pasta there is.
CAN I MAKE LASAGNA IN ADVANCE?
The lasagna may be assembled and stored, unbaked, in the refrigerator for up to 2 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month. If frozen, let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Bring to room temperature before baking.
- 1 batch Pumpkin Pasta Dough cut into lasagne noodles
- 1 batch Béchamel Sauce heated to a simmer
- 8 ounces fresh mozzarella cut into small cubes
- 3 cups freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 10 ounces Gorgonzola dolce cheese crumbled or diced
- 8 ounces Fontina or fontal cheese shredded
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter for the baking dish
- To make the lasagna recipe, spread a clean tablecloth or several clean tea towels on a flat surface near the stove. Have ready the uncooked pasta, the béchamel, and the cheeses. Place a large bowl filled with ice water near the stove for briefly immersing the cooked lasagna noodles to remove excess starch.
- Heat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Lightly butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
- Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil and salt it generously. Carefully drop in 4 or 5 lasagna noodles, taking care not to crowd the pot. Boil the pasta for about 1 minute, as fresh pasta cooks quickly and the lasagna noodles should be slightly underdone. Use a large skimmer to remove the noodles from the pot and gently immerse them in the bowl of ice water. Then use the skimmer to remove the noodles and let them drip before spreading them on the clean tablecloth. Continue to cook, cool, and spread out the lasagna noodles until you have cooked and cooled all of them.
- Spread a thin layer of béchamel in the bottom of the prepared dish. Arrange a single layer of the lasagna noodles over the sauce. Spread just enough béchamel over the pasta to cover it, and sprinkle half of the mozzarella over the béchamel. Sprinkle about 1/5 of the Parmigiano over the mozzarella. Arrange another layer of noodles in the dish and spread béchamel over them. Sprinkle the Gorgonzola and a little more Parmigiano on top. Arrange a third layer of noodles in the dish and cover them with béchamel. Sprinkle the Fontina and more Parmigiano on top. Arrange a fourth layer of noodles in the dish and spread béchamel over the pasta, reserving enough of the sauce for the top. Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella and some Parmigiano on top, reserving enough Parmigiano for the top. Cover with a final layer of noodles and of béchamel. Sprinkle the remaining Parmigiano on top.
- Cover the dish with aluminum foil. Bake the lasagna for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, or until it is bubbling and the top is golden brown. Remove the lasagna from the oven and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting. To serve, cut into individual portions, and transfer to shallow rimmed bowls. Serve immediately.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
The choice of the assorted cheeses, especially the fontina and Gorgonzola, went perfectly with the pumpkin. The béchamel just finished it with a velvety mouthfeel.
Originally published November 7, 2011