Spring Lasagna With Carrots, Peas, and Asparagus

(from saymyname’s recipe box)

Serves 8 people

Categories: Casserole, Lasagna, Main Dish


  • Tomato and Vegetable Sauce:
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 medium onions , chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves , minced
  • 1 (28 ounce) can whole tomatoes , snipped to pieces in the can with kitchen shears
  • 1 (16 ounce) bag frozen peas and carrots , thawed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme , chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • Cheese Filling:
  • 32 ounces ricotta cheese (regular or lowfat, do not use fat free)
  • 2 large eggs , at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • Noodles:
  • 9 no-boil lasagna noodles
  • 1 lb pencil-thin asparagus spear


  1. Position oven rack in center of oven; preheat oven to 350°.

  2. Make the sauce: heat a large pan over medium heat, add in butter and olive oil; when butter has almost melted, add the onion; cook, stirring often, until translucent, about 3 minutes.

  3. Add in garlic; cook, stirring constantly, until aromatic, about 15 seconds.

  4. Pour in the tomatoes and their juice along with the peas and carrots; stir well and bring mixture to a simmer.

  5. Stir in the thyme, salt, pepper, and nutmeg; simmer just to blend the flavors and boil off a lot of the liquid, about 10 minutes.

  6. You don’t want sauce as thick as ragu—more like a loose tomato sauce but beware of a watery sauce.

  7. Remove pan from heat and set aside.

  8. Cheese filling: whisk the ricotta, eggs, and lemon zest in a big bowl; do not beat—the ricotta should not turn watery.

  9. Prepare asparagus: trim off any beige or woody ends; shave off the outer skin to ensure that the spears will be tender after they are baked.

  10. If you asparagus is not pencil thin, shave down the spears with a vegetable peeler.

  11. Assemble the lasagna in a 13 × 9 inch baking pan as follows: 1 cup tomato sauce spread across the bottom of the pan; 3 no-boil noodles; 1 ½ cups tomato sauce; half the cheese filling (use a rubber spatula to spread it evenly); half the asparagus spears (lay them tip to root in alternating directions); 3 more no-boil noodles; 1 ½ cups tomato sauce, the remaining cheese filling, the remaining asparagus spears, the remaining noodles, and finally the remaining tomato sauce.

  12. Cover pan with a layer of parchment paper, then a layer of foil.

  13. Bake for 35 minutes, then uncover the pan and continue baking until bubbling and gooey, about 10 minutes.

  14. Let rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.

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