Curry Chicken Lasagna with Lentils

Curry Chicken Lasagna with Lentils

Serves 8-10

Mise En Place

Roasted Vegetable Layer
  • 2 cups Roasted Vegetables, suggested ½ head cauliflower, 2 sweet potatoes and 4 carrots
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
Seasoned Brown Lentils Layer
  • 2 cups brown lentils
  • 1 tsp. Cardamom pods
  • 2 Stars Anise
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • Cheesecloth, butchers twine or mesh tea steeper
Chicken Thigh and Curry Spice Blend for Marinade
  • 1 tsp. Tea Masala (cinnamon, ginger, cloves, cardamom and black pepper)
  • 1 tbsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Black Pepper
  • 2 tbsp. Coriander (ground)
  • 1 tsp. Cumin
  • 2 tbsp. Turmeric
  • 1 tsp. Paprika (smoked mild)
  • 2 tbsp. Parsley Flakes
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 1lb. Chicken thighs, boneless and skinless, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • Large Ziploc® Resealable bag
Ricotta Cheese Filling Layer
  • ½ tsp. Black Pepper
  • 150 g Boursin® shallot and chives
  • 475g Ricotta
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 tbsp. Fresh chives, finely chopped
Béchamel Sauce 
  • 3 tbsp. Coconut Flour
  • 3 tbsp. Coconut oil
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1-398 ml can coconut milk or 3 cups skim milk
  • 225g Mozzarella cheese, grated
Tomato Sauce 
  • 2 cups or 1 jar San Marzano Strained Tomatoes
  • 2 tsp. Coriander, ground
  • 1 tsp. Cumin
  • 2 tsp. Tea Marsala
  • 1 cup chicken stock or water

 

  • ¾ cup hard cheese, grated Parmigiana Reggiano or Grand Padano
  • 225g Mozzarella Cheese, grated
  • 2-360g pkge Fresh Lasagna Sheets
  • Lasagna pan 9 ½ x 14 x 3 inch

 

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Curry Spice Mixture

Salt, Pepper, Parsley Flakes, Cumin, Paprika, Tea Marsala, Ground Coriander and Turmeric

Lentils

Place cardamom pods, and star anise in a bouquet garni along with the garlic cloves and thyme sprigs. In a large pot, cook the brown lentils according to package instructions with the bouquet garni. When lentils are cooked, strain. Set aside. Remove cooked garlic cloves to use in the tomato sauce.

Curry Chicken Layer

In a large bowl, add the cubed chicken thighs, curry spice blend and vegetable oil. Wearing latex gloves mixture together until all the chicken is evenly coated. Place in a Ziploc® resealable bag and refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight.

Chicken Thighs Salt, Pepper, Parsley Flakes, Cumin, Paprika, Tea Marsala, Ground Coriander and Tumeric

Chicken Thighs and Curry Spice Mixture

In a large nonstick skillet, place all the contents of the Ziploc® bag on medium heat. Cook the chicken until done approximately 8 minutes. Remove chicken and set aside.

In the same skillet, place the 2 cloves of garlic from the cooked lentils, and cumin, tea marsala, ground coriander and toast spices for 2 minutes at low to medium heat. Add the jar of strained San Marzano tomatoes and water or chicken stock. Cook sauce on medium high heat for 10 min.

Ricotta Cheese Layer

In a large bowl, mix together ricotta cheese, salt, pepper and Boursin® cheese with the 2 beaten eggs. Add finely chopped parsley.

Roasting Vegetables

Clean 1 head of cauliflower; peel the sweet potatoes and carrots. Place the sweet potatoes, cauliflower and carrots out in an even layer on an aluminum foil lined baking sheet, toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ground black pepper. Roast for 20 minutes, or until tender and just starting to brown.

Bechamel Sauce

While the vegetables are roasting, make the béchamel sauce. In a medium saucepan, cook the coconut oil over medium heat until it is melted, then add the finely chopped shallots until translucent. Add the coconut flour, and whisk to incorporate. Cook the oil and flour mixture, whisking constantly, for 2-3 minutes, making sure it doesn’t brown. Slowly begin adding the coconut milk, half a cup at a time. The mixture will seize up and thicken quite a bit after the first addition, but don’t worry. Keep whisking and adding slowly until the sauce is thickened and coats the back of a wooden spoon. This should take about 10 minutes. When the sauce is cooked, add mozzarella

Once all of the components are ready, it’s time to assemble the dish.

Assemble the Curry Chicken Lasagna

Grease a 9 ½ x 14 x 3 inch loaf pan with cooking spray, then spread a quarter of the tomato sauce in the bottom. Next make one layer of lasagna sheets breaking/cutting them as necessary to fit. Spread a quarter of the béchamel sauce on top of the lasagna sheet. Top the sheet evenly with the roasted vegetable mixture, and place lasagna sheets to cover.

Next add another lasagna sheet on top, then quarter of tomato sauce to cover. Add cooked lentils over the tomato sauce. Press the ingredients down into even layers as you are assembling the lasagna. Add another lasagna sheet, and then add the ricotta cheese filling and sprinkle with quarter of the grated mozzarella cheese. Add another lasagna sheet and add the cooked curry chicken thighs and cover with the tomato sauce. Top with the last layer of pasta, the last quarter of tomato sauce and the last of the mozzarella cheese.

Spray aluminum foil sheet with cooking spray. Cover.

To cook, bake at 375 for 30-35 minutes, or until the top is browned and the lasagna is bubbling. Uncover the lasagna, sprinkle with the grated Parmesan cheese and bake an additional 5-10 minutes until golden. Serve.

Curry Chicken Lasagna

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Quick and Easy Elbow Pasta with Lentils

This pasta dish was a go to from my childhood. I remember my Mom and my Nanie making this for dinner or snack in a pinch.

I like it because it can be adapted for what you have in your pantry and/or fridge.

Quick and Easy Elbow Pasta with Lentils

Serves 4-6  approx. 15-20 min.
Quick and Easy Elbow Pasta with Lentils

Quick and Easy Elbow Pasta with Lentils

Mise En Place

  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, finely grated
  • 1/2 cup of white wine, I used the Riesling that was left on my counter 😉 *
  • 540 ml can of lentils, drained and rinsed
  • 1-450 g bag of elbow(no.26) pasta, cooked

    Mise En Place for Quick and Easy Elbow Pasta with Lentils

    Mise En Place for Quick and Easy Elbow Pasta with Lentils

  • 2 cups of reserved pasta water
  • 4 tbsp fresh salsa, used Garden Fresh
  • 2 cups of our favourite jar of sauce, PC Marinara is mine **
  • fresh basil, chopped
  • fresh dill, chopped
  • parmesan or romano cheese, grated for garnish
  • salt, pepper,and red pepper flakes to taste

Cook elbow pasta in heavily salted water according to package directions. Before straining pasta, reserve 1 cup of pasta cooking liquid.***

Using a low to medium heat olive oil in a large sauce pan. Add the finely grated garlic until it becomes fragrant. Don’t overcook or burn the garlic will become bitter. Add the white wine and cook until the alcohol has evaporated approx. 1-2 minutes.

Add the can of lentils, salsa and marinara sauce. Simmer until heated through. Add the reserved pasta water to thin the sauce to your desired consistency.

Add the fresh chopped basil and fresh chopped dill. Check the flavour and season appropriately with salt and pepper.

Add the cook pasta to the finished lentil and marinara sauce and tossed.

Garnish with grated parmesan or romano cheese and red pepper flakes, if for some added kick.

Serve with a fresh side salad.

Quick and Easy Elbow Pasta with Lentils

Quick and Easy Elbow Pasta with Lentils

** A homemade pasta sauce is always a better option but in a pinch find a sauce at the supermarket that has only real ingredients. My go to sauce is PC Marinara.

*** Tip: Sometimes is your final sauce for pasta not up to par?  Why add plain old tap water too thin or adjust your sauce when you are going to dump this goodness down the drain?  I always reserve at least 1 cup of the starchy, salty flavourful cooking liquid before straining the pasta.