At first I was highly skeptical about how the pumpkin and tomato would mesh, but this wonderful marriage of flavours has to be tasted to be believed-it's honestly even better than a meat lasagne-and I have a wonderful recipe for that too! The bacon pieces scattered through the golden cheesy white sauce that tops this great family meal really makes it sing. You could easily leave out the bacon for a vegetarian meal if you so desired.
PUMPKIN & BACON LASAGNE
800g-1kg pumpkin, peeled, deseeded and cubed
1/2 cup sour cream or cream
3x chicken stock cubes
1/2 cup hot water
700g jar tomato passata
400g can diced tomato
1 tsp garlic, crushed
1 tsp mixed herbs
1-2 boxes dried lasagne sheets
2 tbsp butter
3 tbsp plain flour
1 cup cheese, grated
2 cups milk
3 tbsp Parmesan cheese
80g diced bacon
Place diced pumpkin in a saucepan with water covering the top. Cook until soft. Strain the water and place the pumpkin in a blender with the sour cream, chicken stock and water. Puree until smooth.
In a saucepan heat up the passata, diced tomatoes, garlic and herbs until warm.
Heat the oven to 180C.
Place a layer of the pasta sheets on the bottom on the 9x13 inch lasagne dish. Top with a layer of the tomato mixture. Place another layer of the pasta sheets over the tomato mixture. Spread a layer of the pumpkin puree over these pasta sheets. Repeat, alternating the tomato mixture with the pumpkin puree between the layers of pasta until exhausted (the ingredients, not you!)
The last layer should end with pasta sheets.
To make the white sauce which covers these pasta sheets, place the butter and flour in a saucepan on low heat. When the butter melts, quickly whisk the butter into the flour while pouring in a little of the milk at a time, to make a smooth paste. Add the remaining milk and heat through. Add the grated cheese and stir through, and continue stirring until it has melted, and the white sauce is thick.
Pour this white sauce over the final pasta layer. Sprinkle with Parmesan and cooked bacon pieces.
Cook in preheated oven for approximatey one hour, or until the top layer forms a golden cheesy crust.
Cool for 10 minutes before serving.