Butternut Squash and Spinach Lasagne

When you have a food blog, you want to add recipes that are delicious, but they also need to look good in a photograph too. I’m not the best photographer (and when I’ve made something I generally just want to get on with eating it, not spending ages photographing it!). I’ve also found that some dishes just don’t look great. This recipe is one that is tasty, but just not pretty to look at.

Butternut Squash and Spinach Lasagne (serves 2-3)

1/2 large butternut squash, chopped into 1cm cubes
2 small onions, chopped into 2cm chunks
Olive oil
400g tin of chopped tomatoes
3 tsp Italian dried mixed Herbs
150g Spinach (I often use frozen)
100g butter
3 sage leaves, finely chopped
100g plain flour
Ground black pepper
650ml of milk
10 lasagne sheets (fresh is good if you want it to cook quickly, but dried sheets are fine if you don’t mind waiting longer for your lasagne to cook)
50g vegetarian Parmesan style cheese

1. Preheat oven to 200°C.

2. Roast the Butternut Squash and onion, drizzled with oil, in the oven for 25 minutes until cooked through.

3. Heat the tomatoes, herbs and spinach together in a pan to make a rustic sort of tomato sauce. Stir in the butternut squash and onion.

4. Make the white sauce by melting the butter with the sage leaves. Add the flour and the ground pepper, to taste, and whisk to form a smooth paste. Allow to cook for a further minute. Slowly add the milk a splash at a time, whisking into combine before adding more milk. Put the sauce to one side.

5. Assemble the lasagne by layering the sheets of pasta, tomato sauce and the white sauce. Top the lasagne with the vegetarian parmesan.

6. Bake for 25 minutes if using fresh lasagne sheets, or around 45 minutes if you are using dried pasta.

I’ve also found that I can make an allergy friendly version of the white sauce using dairy free spread (Vitalite), gluten free plain flour and a milk substitute (Koko). In this instance I would also use dairy free cheese instead of the vegetarian parmesan.

Advertisements

Mexican seasoning mix

I’ve been for a sparkling afternoon tea today and I’m so full up that I haven’t wanted anything else to eat, so my plans to blog my evening meal have gone out of the window! Today’s challenge for Blog Everyday in September was to share your camera equipment. Unfortunately, as anyone who sees my blog will find easy to spot, most pictures are hurriedly taken with my phone or tablet. The photography on my blog is definitely something I need to work on!

For today’s post, I am therefore going to share something I’ve just started making; my own Mexican spice mix, meant to replicate the fajita seasoning mixes that I used to buy in packets. Purchasing it is no longer an option for us as they contain ingredients that my husband is allergic to. Making my own means I can control what goes in, and it’s also nice to use up spices already in my cupboard.

image

Mexican seasoning mix

2 tbsp chilli powder
½ tsp onion powder
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp dried oregano
1 ½ tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp chilli flakes
2 tsp ground cumin
A pinch of salt and pepper

Mix all the spices together well to combine and store in a jar.

Vegan Sticky Ginger cake

I’ve not been posting much on this blog recently; the main reason being that we’re tackling a whole bunch of allergies in our household, which makes trying new recipes a bit of a challenge.

This recipe is for a cake, and it’s pretty good to say it cuts out a lot of allergens.

image

Sticky Ginger Cake (makes one loaf)

120g black treacle
50g vegetable oil
60g sugar
1 apple
1 banana
250g gluten free flour
1 tsp (gluten free) bicarbonate of soda
4 tsp ground ginger
200ml soya milk
75g stem ginger, chopped into small chunks (optional)

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the treacle, oil and sugar.
  3. Peel and core the apple and grate it. Add to the mixture.
  4. Mash the banana and stir this in.
  5. Sieve the flour, bicarbonate of soda and ground ginger into the mixture.
  6. Stir in the milk and the stem ginger, if using. (The recipe works well without it, so I wouldn’t buy stem ginger specially, but it does taste great.)
  7. Pour the mixture into a prepared loaf tin. Bake in the preheated oven for at least 1 hour, but it might need up to 30 minutes longer, so keep checking in it. If you need to, cover the top of the cake with foil to prevent it from burning.
  8. If you’ve used some stem ginger, drizzle some of the syrup from the jar over the cake while it is still warm to add to the stickiness. Otherwise, leave to cool.

(Next time I make this I’m going to make a lemon icing, which I think will be a nice addition.)