Giada’s Butternut Squash Lasagna with Pesto Cream
I still can’t get over the fact that Thanksgiving is next week. How’d that happen, anyway? Seems like one day you’re trying to keep a Fudgesicle from dripping down your chin and the next week you’re elbow-deep in pumpkin guts. For the last few years, I’ve celebrated Thanksgiving with my boyfriend’s family here in Queens, where a few things can be counted on as yearly traditions. 1) There will be at least 20 people there, (2) at least two out of the seven children will lose a tooth or stain an article of clothing, and (3) lasagna will be served as the first course. I’d bet the farm on it, if I had one.
You might be wondering if I plan on fixing Butternut Squash Lasagna for this year’s gathering. What are you, crazy? Serving traditional meat and ricotta lasagna is their family tradition, and you don’t mess with another family’s tradition. Plus, I’m not in the business of fixing what ain’t broken. Vin’s mom makes kick-ass lasagna.
But so does my girl Giada, and consequently, me. If you’re absolutely certain you won’t be stepping on anyone’s traditional toes, I’d recommend sitting this square in the center of your Thanksgiving table.
1. Roast peeled, cubed butternut squash with olive oil, salt and pepper.
2. Whip up a deliciously delectable bechamel sauce.
3. Pulse basil in a food processor and stir it into the bechamel. The squash also gets a whirl in the processor with a few amaretti cookies for a touch of sweetness.
4. Begin constructing the lasagna in layers. Toss shredded mozzarella and grated parmesan between the layers of the basil bechamel and the pureed squash.
There’s a real nice mix of textures and flavors in this baby.
I may be the only blogger in history to photograph two-day old leftovers, but I assure you this tasted better than it looked. Plus, everybody knows that Thanksgiving is really all about the leftovers anyway.