Rainbow Lasagna

One of my favourite things to do is recipe research. I spend hours reading through food blogs, scrolling through Instagram and flicking through the pages of my cookbooks in order to get inspiration for my next meal. I have seen a couple of interpretations of this rainbow lasagna around and I have been so excited to make it. This lasagna is vegetarian - layered with different mixtures and sauces to create a multicoloured effect. The wow factor is not only in the presentation but in the flavour. This baked pasta dish is worth the effort and is a good way of ensuring you're getting a few of your five a day!

Ingredients

 

12-15 Dried or Fresh Lasagna Sheets

125g Mozzarella

 

For the Tomato Sauce

700g Tomatoes (I used Cherry Tomatoes)

2 Cloves Garlic 

Drizzle of Olive Oil 

1tsp Chili Flakes

Salt and Pepper to Season

 

For the Pumpkin Puree

1/2 Large Butternut Squash

1 Clove Garlic

Drizzle of Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper to Season

 

For the Beetroot layer

1.5kg Raw Beetroot

3-4 Sprigs Fresh Thyme

Drizzle of Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper to Season

1 Heaped tbsp Natural Yoghurt

 

For the Spinach and Ricotta layer

250g Ricotta Cheese

250g Frozen Spinach

1/2 Onion

1 Garlic Clove

Salt and Pepper to Season

 

Method

 

  1. Begin by making the individual sauces and layers. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Chop the tomatoes in half (or quarters if they are large) and place into a roasting dish with a drizzle of olive oil, two crushed cloves of garlic, the chili flakes and a good pinch of salt and black pepper. Place into the oven to roast for 30 minutes until soft, golden and blistered. Remove and allow to cool slightly.
  3. Peel and chop the butternut squash into 1 inch pieces and place into a roasting tray. Crush the garlic and add to the squash along with a drizzle of olive oil and a good pinch of salt and black pepper. Place into the oven with the tomatoes and roast for 30-35 minutes until soft. Remove and allow to cool.
  4. Peel the beetroot and chop into 1 inch pieces and place into another roasting tray lined with foil or baking paper.  Drizzle with a little olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and add the leaves from the sprigs of thyme. Toss together and place into the oven to roast for 40-45 minutes or until softened. Remove and allow to cool.
  5. Halfway through roasting all of the vegetables, toss them through with a spoon to prevent sticking and ensure they are cooked evenly. Add an extra drizzle of oil if the pumpkin or beetroot is looking very dry.
  6. For the spinach layer, finely chop the onion and place into a frying pan with a drizzle of oil and the crushed garlic. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and lightly fry to soften the onion. Add the frozen spinach into the pan with a small splash of water to prevent burning and gently soften the spinach. When all the water and moisture has cooked off (about five more minutes) place the spinach mixture into a bowl to cool. Once cool, add in the ricotta and stir to combine.
  7. Blitz the tomatoes into a smooth sauce and place into a bowl. Place the cooled roasted pumpkin into a food processor and blitz into a puree - place into a separate bowl. Next place the roasted beets into a cleaned food processor with the natural yoghurt and puree (its ok if this isn't perfectly smooth - it adds texture).
  8. You should have four bowls of sauces/purees/mixtures now. Place a pan of simmering water on the stovetop (if you are using dried lasagna sheets as we will use this water to soften them slightly). Take a deep lasagna dish and begin to assemble. 
  9. Add a few spoonfuls of the tomato sauce to the base of the pan - spread around to ensure it covers the bottom of the dish. Place 3-4 dried lasagna sheets into the water for 20 seconds, use tongs to remove them and place them on top of the tomato sauce in the lasagna dish ( I use around 3 for each layer). 
  10. On top of the first layer of lasagna, add half of the spinach and ricotta mixture and spread to cover the lasagna. Soften another few lasagna sheets and layer up as before. Add the rest of the tomato mixture for the next layer and top with more lasagna sheets.
  11. Now add all of the pumpkin mixture and spread over the pasta to make a new layer. Top with more lasagna sheets and add the remaining spinach and ricotta mix for another layer - top this layer with more lasagna sheets.
  12. Add 3/4 of the beetroot mixture to make the next layer and smooth over. Top with one final layer of lasagna sheets and finish with the remaining 1/4 beetroot mixture. Spread this thinly to create the lasagna topping and finish with torn mozzarella and a few thyme sprigs.
  13. Bake the lasagna in the oven at 200 degrees for 30 minutes until soft and bubbling. Serve with rocket for a scrumptious dinner.