Foraged Mushroom Lasagnette

Chef Thomas Dritsas builds flavor-packed, vegetarian mini lasagnes using Barilla Oven-Ready Lasagne Chef. Sweet potato mousse, burrata, browned butter, and pumpkin seed gremolata make for a symphony of textures and flavors, and a stage for a medley of sautéed mushrooms to shine. 

Sweet Potato Mousse
5 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled, cut in 1-in dice
1 cup heavy cream
3 oz unsalted butter, cut in ½-in dice
4 large eggs, beaten
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp kosher salt
Garlic Cream
3 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp minced garlic
1/4 tbsp xanthan gum powder
1 tbsp kosher salt
Crushed peppercorns, as needed
Brown Butter
½ lb unsalted butter, diced
Pumpkin seed Gremolata
½ cup pumpkin seeds, roasted & salted
¼ cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 lemon, yellow skin zested
1 tsp ground Aleppo pepper
4 Barilla® Lasagne Chef
Nonstick spray, as needed
6 cups garlic cream, room temperature
2 1/2 qts sweet potato mousse
6 tbsp grated Grana Padano
Per Serving
1 portion foraged mushroom Lasagnette
Unsalted butter, as needed
5 shitake mushrooms, stems removed
5 oyster mushrooms, stems removed
½ tsp kosher salt
½ burrata cheese ball, room temperature
3 tsp Brown Butter, warm
1 1/2 tbsp Pumpkin Seed Gremolata

For the Sweet Potato Mousse:

  1. Place the diced sweet potatoes in a medium pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are fork tender.
  2. Drain off the water and place the potatoes in a colander in a sink and let them drain off and dry up slightly.
  3. Transfer the sweet potatoes to a food processor and puree them until smooth. This might have to be in batches depending on the food processors capacity. Transfer the puree to a stainless-steel bowl and continue until all the potatoes are processed.
  4. Add all the remaining ingredients to the pureed potatoes and whisk until smooth.
  5. Reserve the filling for assembly of the lasagnette. Cover and refrigerate if made ahead.

For the Garlic Cream:

  1. Place a saucepan over medium heat and add the oil to the pan to slightly heat.
  2. Add the garlic and stir with a spoon to evenly spread in the pan while caramelizing. Once the garlic is caramelized and fragrant, add the cream to stop the garlic from cooking and bring the cream to a boil while whisking to avoid the cream boiling over.
  3. Combine the salt and xanthan in a small cup and stir to evenly distribute. Add to the cream while whisking to avoid lumping. Boil the cream for 1 minute. Stir in the peppercorns.
  4. Transfer the cream to a container and cool to room temperature for assembly of the lasagnette.

For the Brown Butter:

  1. Place a sauté pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the butter to the hot pan. Cook until the butter solids settle to the bottom of the pan and start to caramelize or brown.
  3. Once you see and smell the browning of the butter, shut off the heat and stir with a small wire whisk to pull up the browned bits from the bottom of the sauté pan.
  4. Let the butter cool to room temperature for assembly of the dish.

For the Pumpkin Seed Gremolata:

  1. Place the pumpkin seeds on a cutting board and rough chop them with a chef’s knife. Leave seeds identifiable as they will add texture to the lasagna.
  2. In a bowl, stir together the chopped pumpkin seeds, parsley, lemon zest, and pepper.
  3. Reserve at room temperature for assembly of the dish.

For the Lasagnette:

  1. Spray a half hotel pan with nonstick spray.
  2. Add 1 1/2 cups of the garlic cream to the bottom of the pan and spread out into an even layer to coat entire surface.
  3. Add one of the Barilla pasta sheets into the pan and create the first layer of noodles for the lasagna.
  4. Add one-third of the sweet potato mousse onto the noodles and spread out with a spatula into an even layer corner to corner, end to end.
  5. Repeat layering with the cream, pasta sheet, and sweet potato mousse, building two additional layers so there are three at this point.
  6. For the last layer, place the pasta onto the sweet potato mousse and then pour remaining garlic cream onto the top of the last layer of lasagna, ensuring even coverage.
  7. Dust top of lasagne evenly with the cheese to cover surface.
  8. Loosely cover the lasagna with film wrap and then foil. Bake in a 350-degree preheated oven for 30-45 minutes, until the lasagna is set, cooked throughout, and pasta sheets are tender.
  9. Remove the foil and film and turn oven up to 425 degrees and cook for an additional 15 minutes, until the top of the lasagna starts to brown evenly. Remove from the oven and let stand at room temperature so the lasagna can temper down and set.
  10. Once the lasagna is cooled to room temperature, wrap with film wrap and refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours before using.
  11. To portion, cut in half lengthwise and then cut 4 equal cross cuts to get bar-shaped portions of lasagnette.

To serve:

  1. Heat a portion of lasagnette gently in the microwave for 1-minute intervals until it reaches an internal temperature of 155° Transfer the lasagnette with a spatula to a desired dish.
  2. Place a small sauté pan over medium-high heat and add butter to the pan. Once the butter is just melted, add the shiitake mushrooms and stir to coat them with the butter for 1 to 2 minutes, until the mushrooms are just tender. Add the oyster mushrooms and season with the salt.
  3. With a spoon, toss the mushrooms with the butter and let them warm for 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Break up the burrata with your hands and place on top of the heated portion of lasagnette.
  5. Once mushrooms are cooked, transfer them to the top of the lasagnette, arranging them down the top of the portion, letting some fall onto the plate.
  6. With a spoon, pour some of the brown butter on and around the lasagnette so the mushrooms and burrata get some over them.
  7. Spoon some the pumpkin seed gremolata over the top of the lasagnette and around it. Serve.

Chef Notes:

  • The sweet potato mousse can be made ahead and brought to room temperature for assembly of the lasagna. When ready to use, rewhip the contents as they might separate.
  • If you prefer to add any herbs or flavors into the garlic cream, do so when adding the cream to the pan and then strain cream before cooling to room temperature.
  • The brown butter can be made as you are heating the portion(s) of lasagnette for fresh brown fragrant butter flavor and profile.
  • Make the gremolata as close to use as possible for fresh flavor.
  • Make lasagna a day in advance to set. Lasagna will hold well under refrigeration for 2-3 days.