Since the family requests lasagna so often, I try to get creative with this layered pasta dish. I've made the traditional American Lasagna, Kate's favorite, the traditional Italian Lasagna Bolognese, Catt's favorite, and a Grilled Vegetable Lasagna, my favorite. It is now Mikel's turn. He adores Pesto and requested a Pesto Lasagna. Well, maybe not in so many words, but I interpreted that way.
I decided to make this lasagna with traditional pesto sauce (no spinach or tofu added, as I like to do), but instead using olive oil, basil, garlic and pine nuts. Very straightforward. He would have been happy with just the noodles, pesto and cheese, but I wanted to add something more. I made the tofu-spinach ricotta that I normally make for the American Lasagna and layered that in there as well. To add a touch of sweetness, I also layered in grilled onions and roasted pepper. This way the dish wouldn't be "pesto pasta with cheese," but an actual Lasagna dish.
He was enchanted with how it turned out. I was worried the pesto would be too much and overwhelm the dish, but the other components of the recipe balanced the pesto nicely.
red pepper, onion, garlic, spinach: $4
lemon, pine nuts, olive oil: $2
tomato sauce: $2
Total to make 10 servings: