Mushroom Lasagne

Apparently, there are people out there, who don’t like mushrooms. I can imagine few things as inoffensive myself, and mushrooms don’t lack potential if you think about working to their strengths. The only type of mushroom that I don’t have any room for is the anaemic white button but I’m sure if pushed I could find a use for them too. I don’t know if its the time if year, but its not particularly to find wild mushrooms around here at the moment, so I used some dried porcini in this along with chestnut, ‘exotic’ and flat field mushrooms. All available from the supermarket. I know this might sound like a fair few mushrooms, but believe me, this amount will reduce down to very little and you don’t need to buy the combination of mushrooms that I’ve suggested, but don’t get any less in weight. You can add more garlic if you want to, but I didn’t want overpowering, just background. Serves 4.

For the mushroom filling:

  • 250g chestnut mushrooms, sliced
  • 150g flat field mushrooms, chopped
  • 200g exotic mushrooms, sliced
  • handful of dried porcini, rehydrated as per instructions
  • one clove of garlic, crushed
  • half a large onion, sliced
  • salt and pepper
  • shake of worcestershire sauce
  • sprig of fresh thyme
  • olive oil

In a large pan with a lid, pour in a good splosh of olive oil, add your onion, garlic and thyme, salt & pepper and cook over a medium-low heat, lid on, but stirring regularly until the onions are golden and completely softened. Then a handful at a time, add the chopped mushrooms, mixing thoroughly after each addition until the mushrooms are thoroughly mixed with everything else. Turn the heat up a smidge and start to cook the mushrooms, stirring briskly, until they start to break down and release their water. If the mixture seems very dry, you can add some more olive oil but very soon, the mushrooms should be softening and releasing their juices. You want to cook the mushrooms down for about 30 minutes over a low heat, until the mushrooms have shrunk right down and the pan is dry of the juices. Set to one side.

To assemble the lasagne:

  • 1 quantity of white sauce (I don’t have my own recipe, after making it by sight for 17 odd years. Can’t beat Delia for the basics though)
  • packet of lasagne sheets
  • 150g parmesan cheese, grated
  • 100g strong cheddar, grated
  • quantity of mushroom filling

Preheat oven to gas 5. For me, lasagne is all about the pasta, so I always make lots of thinner layers rather than a couple of big ones. Divide the mushrooms roughly into 4 equal quantities. Put a little white sauce into the bottom of a lasagne pan and place on your first layer of pasta. On top of this, put on your first bit of mushroom filling,  about a  fifth of the cheese and an approxmate fifth of white sauce. Add another layer of pasta and repeat the process until you’ve used your mushrooms. Put on a final layer of lasagne, top with the remaining white sauce and finish off with grated cheese.   Put the lasagne in the oven and cook it for 30-40 minutes. Goes nicely with green veg. Scoff.

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