Asparagus lasagne

Yield: 8 Servings

Measure Ingredient
4 pounds Asparagus, trimmed
3 tablespoons Extra-virgin olive oil
6 7 by 6 1/4 inch sheets
No boil lasagne noodles
⅛ pounds Unsalted butter
¼ cup All-purpose flour
1½ cup Chicken broth
½ cup Water
7 ounces Mild goat cheese
Such as Montrachet
1 teaspoon Freshly grated lemon
Zest, or to taste
1⅔ cup Freshly grated
Parmesan cheese
1 cup Heavy cream

Cut the tips off each asparagus spear and reserve them. In each of 2 large shallow baking pans toss half the asparagus stalks with half the oil, coating them well, and roast them in a preheated 500 F oven, shaking the pans every few minutes, for 5 to 10 minutes, or until they are crisp-tender. Sprinkle the asparagus with salt to taste and let it cool. Cut the roasted asparagus into ½ inch lengths and reserve it.

In a large bowl of cold water let the sheets of lasagne soak for 15 minutes, or until they are softened. In a saucepan melt the butter, add the flour, and cook the roux over moderately low heat, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add the broth and the water in a stream, whisking, simmer the mixture for 5 minutes, and whisk in the goat cheese, the zest, and salt to taste, whisking until the sauce is smooth.

Drain the pasta well, arrange 1 sheet of it in each of 2 buttered 8 inch baking dishes, and spread each sheet with one fourth of the sauce. Top the sauce in each dish with one fourth of the reserved roasted asparagus and sprinkle the asparagus with ⅓ cup of the Parmesan. Continue to layer the pasta, the sauce, the asparagus, and the Parmesan in the same manner, ending with a sheet of pasta. In a bowl beat the cream with a pinch of salt until it holds soft peaks.

Arrange the reserved asparagus tips decoratively on the pasta, spoon the cream over the pasta and the asparagus tips, spreading it with the back of the spoon, and sprinkle the remaining ⅓ cup Parmesan on top. Bake the lasagne in the middle of a pre- heated 400 F oven for 20 to 30 minutes, or until it is golden and bubbling, and let it stand for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 8.

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