Fall is Butternut Squash Season
It’s often described as a “foodie Disneyland,” and inside you’ll find pizza, pasta, pastries, cheese, gelato, lavazza coffee, salami, seafood, meat and quality ingredients imported from Italy.
To some it may sound too good to be true, but to New York City it sounds like high-end Italian food purveyor Eataly.
Although technically a high-end grocery store, this Italian paradise also has a few small restaurants tucked inside, where diners can fall in love with authentic cuisine that’s made fresh daily on the premises.
One of Eataly’s most adored dishes is the butternut squash lasagna, which you can make at home relatively easily.
Butternut Squash Lasagna:
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 pounds butternut squash (whole or pre-cubed)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup butter
3 amaretti cookies
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups whole milk
3/4 cup fresh basil leaves
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
Fresh ground nutmeg
Fresh black pepper
Lasagna noodles (non-boiled)
Skin squash, seed it and chop into 1-inch cubes (or buy pre-cubed). Toss with salt and pepper until it’s well coated; set aside. Heat a heavy and large skillet over medium heat and add olive oil. Add squash, tossing until it’s coated with the oil. Add water and continue to cook for 20 minutes. Then, turn off heat, allowing squash to cool lightly. Once squash is cool, transfer to a food processor. Crumble cookies in with the squash and blend well. Season the squash puree with more salt and pepper if necessary; set aside.
Melt butter in a medium sized saucepan. Add the flour and whisk for 1 minute, then gradually add milk and whisk. Crank the heat to high and bring to a boil. Once boiling and the mixture starts to thicken, reduce heat to medium. Continue to cook for 5 minutes, whisking often. Then grate in a little bit of fresh nutmeg, turn off heat and allow the mixture to cool. Once cool, transfer half of the sauce to a blender. Add basil and blend until it becomes smooth and creamy. Add basil sauce to the remaining sauce still in the pan and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper as necessary.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and position the oven rack in the center. Grease a large glass baking dish with butter and then spread 3/4 cup of the sauce in the baking dish. Arrange three lasagna noodles along the bottom of the dish, spreading 1/3 of the squash puree on top of the noodles. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese on top of the squash, then a bit of parmesan over this mixture. Repeat until you have three layers. Add any remaining cheese on top.
Cover your lasagna with foil and bake 40 minutes, or until the sauce bubbles and the top becomes golden in color. Let the lasagna cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.