I had a great time on air at ABC North Coast radio last Saturday with Phil Dudman and Graeme Stuart for the Good Gardening program. I do the programme once a month and it comes around so quickly.
Phil had pumpkin, spinach and fennel from his garden so I came up with two recipes to feed the hungry presenter, Graeme. I don’t think he was very fulfilled last month when I cooked with chokoes but I won him back this time, he was a happy chappy with a full tum by the end of the show.
I cooked a Salsa Verde Salmon with Braised Fennel and a Carrot, Ginger Puree and I made a Spinach and Pumpkin lasagne. Here is the recipe for the lasagne, check out the salmon dish on the ABC North Coast website. Enjoy.
Pumpkin and Spinach lasagne
1kg pumpkin, peeled, deseeded and cit into small pieces
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 green onions
1 red chilli, sliced
1 bunch silverbeet, stems trimmed and washed
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 cups well packed basil leaves
3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
80gms pine nuts, toasted
1 tablespoon white vinegar
50gms parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
100gms parmesan cheese
2 eggs, lightly whisked
60mls thickened cream
4 fresh lasagne sheets
Heat oven to 200C/180C fan. Toss the pumpkin with the oil and sugar in a roasting tin, season, then roast until tender and slightly charred at the edges. This can take up to 40 mins. Remove from the oven and mash until smooth.
Meanwhile to cook the spinach, heat the oil in a large saucepan on medium to high heat. Add the leeks, green onions and chilli and cook until softened. Add the silverbeet, cover and cook for 10 minutes or until the silverbeet has wilted. Remove from the heat and when it is cool enough to handle, squeeze out any liquid and blend until smooth, add the nutmeg and season with salt and pepper.
To make the pesto, in a food processor place the basil, garlic, pine nuts, vinegar and parmesan cheese and blend until combined. While the blender is going gradually add the olive oil until all combined and you have an oozy consistency, season with salt and pepper.
In a large bowl, combine the ricotta, 200gms mozzarella, 50gms parmesan, eggs, and cream. Add the pesto and mix well.
Grease a 2 litre capacity baking or Pyrex dish and assemble the lasagne. Line the base with a lasagne sheet then top with a third of the ricotta and basil mixture and then spread a layer of the pumpkin. Lay another sheet of lasagne and top with another third of the ricotta and basil mixture and then the spinach puree. Add another sheet of lasagne and add the remaining ricotta and basil mixture. Finish with a layer of lasagne and the remaining mozzarella and parmesan cheese. Cook in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until the lasagne is golden and bubbly.