Pumpkin isn’t just for Hallowe’en

by Organikal on October 8, 2006

PumpkinhalloweenLast week sure was busy for us. This wasn’t a surprise, and in preparation last Sunday was spent in the kitchen – for most of the day!

I made cauliflower and leek soup, tomato & lentil soup, veggie chilli, roasted vegetables and a pumpkin lasagne.

With the addiiton of some good bread, rice, halloumi, green beans and brocolli we were set up for a gastronomic week, with minimal effort.

The most successful item was the pumpkin lasagne. It was my first attempt – and based on the recipe from Jude Blereau’s Wholefood book. It surely proved the point that a pumpkin isn’t just for decorating at Hallowe’en!

I made some changes, as you do – and used feta cheese in place of ricotta. My home made tomato sauce was really nothing more than a bottle of passatta, with some sauteed onions and home-grown baby courgettes, suffused with bay leaf, thyme, rosemary and garlic.

Jude’s recipe is as follows;

600g pumpkin – cut into 3cm pieces
olive oil, for brushing
2 red peppers
250g mushrooms, sliced
2 bunches spinach
750ml tomato sauce
12-15 lasagne sheets
300g ricotta
handful grated pecorino cheese (I used parmesan)
handful grated cheddar to top
handful fresh flatleaf parsley

preheat oven to 180 deg C. put pumpkin in baking dish, drizzle with 1 tbsp oil & massage in. bake for 1 hour or until pumpkin is soft & just begining to brown. remove from oven & allow to cool.

as soon as pumplin is in oven, wash red peppers & remove core & seeds. stand upside down in baking dish & rub well with oil. Bake for 30-50 mins until skin is well wrinkled & begins to blacken. remove & put into bowl, with plate on top until cool. remove skins and set aside.

heat 1 tbsp oil in pan and saute mushrooms for 4-5 mins.

was spinach & cook v gently in pan with only water attached to leavesm until wilted. drain well and chop.

spread tomato sauce on bottom of baking dish, then lay lasagne sheets on top. top with pumpkin and mushrooms and spoon more sauce on top. cover with layer of lasagne sheets and top with spinach, red peppers and ricotta (or feta) and season well. top with another layer of lasagne, tomato sauce and cheddar and pecorino (or parmesan).

bake for 1 hour until golden & sprinkle with parsley.

The recipe is for 4-6 people. we found it gave 6 very generous portions and would have served 8 quite satisfactorily. We accompanied with green beans with a lemon butter dressing the first round, and the second round was accompanied by broccoli – sprinkled toasted almonds would have made a delightful addition. We’ve saved the last 2 portions in the freezer for emergency comfort food situations!

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Polly Purvis October 11, 2006 at 8:20 pm

Other pumpkin/squash recipes and finds. Butternut squash and red pepper soup, or add a sachet of coconut milk to butternut squash soup. Mmmm. Also just discovered Kabocha squash tastes like a cross between sweet potato and Scotch tablet – not so sweet though but definitely worth a try !

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