I’m very excited about the summer line-up of recipes I have coming up for you! But today I’m pushing this recipe to the head of the line because it is absolutely delicious!!!! I recently served it for family and they all raved! It has flavorful Italian sausage and a great medley of sautéed Swiss chard infused with onions and lots of garlic! And the whole thing is bathed in a creamy-dreamy sauce with just a hint of heat and layered between lasagna noodles! Sound good? It tastes even better!
I have a big bumper crop of tender-young Swiss chard in my garden. I usually sauté it like spinach, add a splash of balsamic vinegar and some nuts or golden raisins and serve it as a side dish. I also like to put it in soup. It’s wonderful in soup!!!!
But when I saw this recipe, courtesy of Martha Stewart, I knew that I just had to make it! I tweaked it a little to make it my own and this is now my favorite company (and family) recipe. It can be made up ahead and assembled just before company come and then baked. Easy-peasy!!! And it is so so good!
It’s not your regular tomato based lasagna. It has a creamy bechamel sauce that plays up the other flavors in the dish! It’s quite special!
Once the cheesy crust is cracked into you can scoop up the other ingredients swimming in the beautiful sauce!!! Scrumptious!
ITALIAN SAUSAGE AND SWISS CHARD INDIVIDUAL LASAGNA
- 1 box lasagna noodles cooked according to package directions.
- 3 TBS olive oil divided
- 6 TBS butter divided
- 1 1/2 lbs sweet Italian sausage casings removed and broken apart
- 1 large onion peeled and chopped
- 3 lbs. Swiss chard washed, stems removed and chop lengthwise into 1/2 inch ribbons
- 3 large garlic cloves chopped finely or pressed
- 1 TBS lemon peel
- 1 tsp salt divided
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 2 TBS fresh lemon juice
- 1/3 cup flour
- 4 1/2 cups milk (I used 2%)
- 1/4 to 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper ground (if you don't like heat use 1/4 tsp)
- 8 oz. mozzarella cheese grated
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain and remove to a rimmed sheet pan coated with olive oil. Lay the noodles in layers on the sheet pan. Coat each layer with olive oil so they don't stick together. Set aside.
- Add 1 TBS of olive oil and 1 TBS butter to a large pan. Heat over medium heat. Add Italian sausage and cook until done. Keep breaking up the sausage until you have crumbles. Remove to a paper towel.
- In the same pan, add the chopped onions and cook until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the Swiss chard and cook until wilting, about 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook an additional minute. Add the lemon peel, 1/2 tsp salt and pepper. Cook another minute or two. Take the Swiss chard off the heat and add the lemon juice.
- Make the beshamel sauce: Add 5 TBS butter to a large saucepan over medium heat. When the butter is melted add the flour. Stir until incorporated and cook for 1 minute continuing to stir. Add the milk a little at a time and whisk. Add 1/2 tsp salt and cayenne pepper. Let it thicken and gently bubbly until thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
- To assemble individual lasagna: Put 8 baking dishes that are approximately 7 1/2 x 1/2 on a 2 rimmed baking sheets. Spray with cooking spray. Spread 3 TBS beshamel sauce in the bottom of each dish. Cut a lasagna noodle in half and top the sauce with each half side by side. Spread 3 TBS of the Swiss chard mixture over the noodles and top that with half of the sausage, dividing it evenly.
- Repeat the layer. Add the final layer of noodles to the lasagna and spread the rest of the beshamel sauce over the noodles. Finish by sprinkling the dishes with the mozzarella cheese.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes until the lasagna is golden brown and bubbling. Let the dishes rest for 5 minutes and serve!
If you like this recipe you might want to save it to your RECIPE or FOOD Pinterest boards. You can follow me on Pinterest and see all the great things I’m finding to pin every day HERE!