courtesy of By Martha Rose Shulman
This savory vegetarian lasagna is easy to put together. You can assemble it up to a day ahead of time, then bake it shortly before dinner.Ingredients
1 generous bunch Swiss chard (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1⁄2 pound regular or no-boil lasagna noodles
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
2 large garlic cloves, minced or pressed
2 pounds fresh tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced, or 1 (28-ounce) can chopped tomatoes, with juice
Pinch of sugar
1 large basil sprig
Freshly ground pepper
1⁄2 cup fresh ricotta cheese
1⁄3 to 1⁄2 cup freshly grated ParmesanMethod
- Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil while you prepare the chard. Fill a bowl with ice water. Tear the leaves from the stems and wash thoroughly in two changes of water. Discard the stems or set aside for another purpose.
- When the water comes to a boil, add the Swiss chard leaves. Boil 1 minute (from the time the water comes back to a boil), until tender but still bright green, then remove from the water with a slotted spoon or skimmer and transfer to the ice water. Drain and squeeze out excess water. Chop coarsely and set aside. Cook the lasagna noodles in the same pot of water if not using no-boil lasagna. Remove from the pot and toss with 1 teaspoon olive oil in a bowl.
- In a wide, nonstick frying pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium heat and add the garlic. Cook, stirring, just until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, sugar, basil sprig, and salt (begin with 1/2 teaspoon and add more later), and bring to a simmer. Simmer, stirring often, until thick, 15 to 25 minutes, depending on the amount of juice in the pan. Taste and adjust seasonings. Remove the basil sprig. Stir in the Swiss chard and remove from the heat.
- Preheat the oven to 375oF. Oil a square or rectangular baking dish (no bigger than 2-quart) and line the bottom with a layer of lasagna noodles. Spread half the ricotta over the noodles and half the tomato-chard sauce over the ricotta. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons Parmesan over the tomato-chard sauce. Add another layer of noodles and top with the remaining ricotta and tomato-chard sauce, and 2 tablespoons Parmesan. Finish with a layer of noodles and the remaining Parmesan. Drizzle the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over the top. Cover the dish tightly with foil. Bake 30 minutes, or until bubbling and the pasta is tender. Uncover, allow to sit for 5 minutes, and serve.