Fresh greens are bountiful at the farmers markets and my favorite is baby spinach this time of the year. This is a great dish to add other fresh vegetables when they come into season like some sauteed zucchini and grated fresh carrots. Let your imagination and the farmers market decide what goes into your lasagna when you make it. This is a recipe that can change throughout the year depending on the fresh harvest. I also used fresh mushrooms in this recipe. This is also great to freeze and have for a quick dinner later.
1 (28 oz) can Italian whole tomatoes or 2 pound fresh ripe tomatoes
1/2 cup fresh mushrooms, cooked
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tsp basil, dried
2 tsp. tarragon, dried
1 tsp red pepper flakes
2 cloves garlic, chopped
salt & pepper to taste
1 1/2 cup V-8 Juice
6 tbsp. butter
2 cups Cheddar cheese
4 cups Mozzarella cheese
8 oz Parmesan cheese, coarse grated
16 oz cottage cheese
12 oz fresh spinach, cooked
12 wide lasagna noodles, cooked
You need to prepare the sauce first, add tomatoes, mushrooms, onion, basil, tarragon, red pepper flakes, garlic, salt, pepper and V-8 juice in large pot and cook for 20 minutes. Add butter and cook an additional 5 minutes and take off the heat. In medium bowl combine the cottage cheese, eggs, Parmesan cheese and cooked spinach.
Now it is time to assemble in a sprayed 13×9 pan put a 1/4 of the tomato sauce across the bottom and lay 4 noodles over lapping slightly. Spoon on a 1/4 of the tomato sauce, 1/3 cheddar and mozzarella cheese, 1/2 of the cottage cheese mixture. Lay 4 lasagna noodle down, 1/4 sauce, 1/3 cheddar and mozzarella cheese, remaining cottage cheese mixture. Lay down the remaining lasagna noodle, sauce, cheddar and mozzarella cheese.
Bake uncovered in a 375 degree oven for 1 hour. Cool for 20 minutes before cutting. I like cheese so once I cut the lasagna in squares I place a piece of mozzarella cheese over it and melt in microwave for 30 seconds. You could also add some mozzarella cheese on top the last 5 minutes of baking.