In our house lasagna means tomato sauce but fall also means pumpkins. In Florida it is hare to appreciate much in the way of season change so people overcome this by decorating. Pumpkins have be a favorite part of fall for me and my family. Growing up, they were associated with pumpkin pie and pumpkin cookies. But as my palate has expanded and sugar has taken a back seat to whole fresh fruit, pumpkin has also taken on a new role in my kitchen.
Pumpkin ravioli is a savory pumpkin dish but a plant based version is rare because of eggs in the ravioli and butter in the sauce. I recently discovery a new pumpkin variety calabaza pumpkin native to mesoamerica. It has a tan outside and thick ridges. It is very orange inside and similar in taste to a butternut squash. I made a raw cookie with it the first time I purchased a piece and it was so sweet raw I decided to buy a whole one. I decided to cook it in the Instapot because the peel is so dense. My first thought was to continue the desert route and make a pumpkin pudding. There was a lot of flesh when I got chopping and I was also trying to decide what to make for our Saturday nite dinner. Unfortunately, I procrastinated much of the afternoon so I was under a little pressure. I had no time to make an eggless ravioli so I needed to make a quick run to the grocery store. I was planning on either getting manicotti shells or a large pasta shell to stuff. My back up plan was lasagna noodles, and really it would be quicker to make a lasagna than stuff shell. Ok enough background. The end of the story is that the pumpkin lasagna turned out great. Below is the recipe.
A box of lasagna noodles
1/2 of the calabaza pumpkin (probably the size of a butternut squash)
A large box of mushrooms-chopped fine
1/2 cup almond milk
A large bunch of fresh spinach
1 teaspoon of garam marsala
1 teaspoon of allspice
1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg
2 teaspoons of garlic
2 teaspoons rosemary
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 cup of white wine optional (I save the not so good stuff for cooking)
The Docs directions:
Boil the lasagna noodles to just bendable, drain and rinse in cold water to handle
I cooked the pumpkin in the Instapot for 8 minutes-just covered with water. Then drained and peeled.
In the instant of pumpkin I added about 1/2 cup of water and 1/2 cup of almond milk, the nutmeg, garam masala, and allspice. I used the emersion blender to blend until smooth.
In a skillet with about 1/2 cup of water I sautéed he spinach with the pepper, garlic and the other 1/2 teaspoon of allspice.
In a large skillet I sautéed the mushrooms with black pepper and garlic with 1/2 cup of water. After they softened I added another cup of water and the wine and let the skillet simmer. I added water to the cornstarch to mix and then added it to the mushrooms to thicken.
Putting it all together and baking at 350 for 20 minutes
Layer a 9 x 12 baking dish with pumpkin, noodle, pumpkin, noodle, spinach, noodle, pumpkin, noodle, spinach, noodle and then top with the mushroom gravy.
It did not take that long and really was not as messy as regular lasagna and well worth it. Enjoy.