Monday, April 03, 2006

EASY MEDITERRANEAN LASAGNE

Aubergines and courgettes arrived in our vegetable box this week, along with the first sunshine of spring! Much as I love our winter vegetables, summery mediterranean things like tomatoes, basil, courgettes and lettuces are extremely welome after a cold winter.

This lasagne is a lazy invention, and utterly delicious - we have foccacia and salad alongside. (and, of course, a glass of wine.) If no lasagne sheets are in the cupboard, the roast veggies can be mixed with the bechamel and any sort of pasta; just scatter with cheese and heat through in the oven.

for the ROAST VEG:
2 courgettes
1-2 aubergines
1 onion
3-4 tomatoes (or use tinned - see below)
2 cloves garlic
1tbsp pesto
Salt and pepper
1tbsp olive oil

Chop the vegetables and put in a roasting tray. Scatter garlic, salt and pepper on top, then stir in the pesto and oil. Roast for around 30 mins until golden. If no tomatoes are available, stir in half a tin of chopped tomatoes after roasting. This is an infinitely variable recipe - you can vary the veg and the herbs (using fresh basil in season), swap pesto for sundried tomato paste, etc.

WHITE SAUCE
1tbsp butter
1tbsp plain flour
1pint milk
2 handfuls cheese

Melt butter, stir in the flour to make a paste, then very slowly add the milk, whisking after each addition. Heat gently to simmering point and the sauce will thicken. Turn off heat, stir in cheese.

Assemble the lasagne by arranging veg, lasagne, bechamel, until all is used up. Finish with bechamel and extra cheese (veggie parmesan if you can get it).

Bake for about 30-40 mins in a medium oven.