With the exception of the bacon on top (which you could surely leave off . . . but why on earth?!), it's a creamy, vegetarian, slightly-sweet (from the squash) meal that will feed quite a few hungry mouths. If you cook the squash ahead of time and use the no-boil noodles, it comes together fairly quickly. The fried sage on top really makes it shine! —perrysplate
slices of uncooked bacon
1 1/2 cups
smashed roasted butternut squash
soft goat cheese
minced fresh sage or 1/2 tsp dried ground sage + 2 sprigs fresh sage to fry for garnish
Fry the bacon (sliced or whole, whichever you prefer) in a medium saucepan over medium heat until it crisps up. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside.
Meanwhile, remove leaves from the 2 sprigs of fresh sage and add to the hot bacon drippings after you remove the cooked bacon. Fry for about 45 seconds or so until they, too, crisp up. Remove fried leaves from skillet and set aside with cooked bacon bits.
In a small bowl combine the goat cheese, ricotta cheese, egg, 2 T minced fresh sage, salt & pepper. Mix thoroughly. Set aside.
Prepare an 11x7 inch casserole dish with nonstick spray and add spread a couple spoonfuls of marinara sauce in the bottom. Put a layer of lasagna noodles over the sauce. I used three, but I had to break one to make it fit. Spread about 1/2 cup smashed squash over noodles, followed by 1/3 of the goat cheese mixture, 1/3 of the marinara sauce and 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella. Repeat layering two more times with remaining ingredients and top with remaining mozzarella cheese.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and continue to bake, uncovered, for another 15 minutes until everything is bubbly, heated through, and the cheese begins to turn golden brown. Remove from the oven and top with reserved bacon bits and fried sage. Allow to rest for about 10 minutes before slicing.
1. This obviously goes much faster if the squash is roasted ahead of time. It also freezes well. To roast a butternut squash, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Slice the squash in half, discarding seeds and gunk from the center. At this point you can either place it face-up on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil or face-down in a casserole dish and fill the dish with about 1/2-inch of water. Bake for about 40-70 minutes, depending on the size of your squash. When it's done, it should easily pierce with a fork. Allow it to cool, then scrape the flesh from the skin, discarding the skin. Mash, then proceed with recipe. This method works for just about any type of squash.