Today's meal comes to you from the depth of dinner-deseperation. You know when you are looking around the kitchen and you have FOOD but you swear none of it goes together. It does go together, you just don't know how yet! Here's my way of satisfying a pasta and potato craving all in one yummy casserole.
I call it lasagna because of the layers and lasagna noodles but it doesn't feel like the typical lasagna so much without the red tomato sauce but whatever. I think that's just me, right?
No matter what we call it I found it to be extremely satisfying. Starches upon starches with a silky garlic sauce and a thick layer of kale. Oh and some smokey paprika if you're into that. I sure am. It makes potato dishes just sing! With the smoked paprika and green onions it almost tastes like a loaded baked potato. YUM!
So here's a few tips and tricks and hints and what-have-yous about this dish: You can use any leftover mashed potatoes instead of making a fresh batch. You want several cups though so make sure you make A LOT of mashed potatoes next time you want some. You can also make the sauce ahead of time. Then just throw the whole thing together - which you can do up to 12 hours before you bake it. I put mine together and left it in the fridge with baking instructions. Then while we were out at soccer practice (yeah for 3 year olds - it's insane! hahah!) the Mr. could just throw it in the oven and have dinner ready for us when we got home!
- 1 package lasagna noodles
- 4 cups raw kale, chopped
- smoked paprika to taste (about 2-3 teaspoons)
- 1 cup chopped green onions (optional)
Mashed Potato Layer:
- 2.5 pounds potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1/4-1/2 cup soy milk (or your favorite non dairy milk)
- salt and pepper to taste
Garlic White Sauce:
- 1/2 cup rice flour (brown or white - you can also use all purpose flour if you cannot find rice flour. Rice flour just makes a smooth sauce every time - no lumps!)
- 4 cups soy, almond or your favorite non dairy milk
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 3 teaspoons garlic powder
- a pinch of nutmeg
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
For the mashed potatoes: bring a large pot of water to boil. Add in the potatoes and cook until tender. Save about 1/4 cup of the cooking water and drain the rest off. Add the cooking water and potatoes back to the pot. Mash together with 1/4-1/2 cup soy milk (or your favorite non dairy milk.) Add in salt and pepper to taste. (I always add what feels like a LOT of salt to potatoes but they need salt so don't be afraid!) If you like, mix the chopped green onions into the mashed potatoes. You can also stir in about a teaspoon of smoked paprika to the potatoes at this point.
Make the sauce: blend all of the ingredients for the garlic white sauce together in a mixer or with an immersion blender. Cook over medium high heat until thickened. Make sure you whisk the mixture while it is cooking so that it doesn't scorch on the bottom.
Prepare the kale: steam the chopped kale for about 5 minutes or until tender. If you would rather, you can cook them in a frying pan with a bit of water until they are tender.
Prepare the noodles: Bring a large pot of water to boil and cook your lasagna noodles according to the package directions. If you bought No-Cook noodles (the kind that you don't have to pre-boil) you can just proceed with the dry noodles in the recipe as stated.
Preparing the casserole: I used a deep 9x13 casserole for this. First pour a layer of sauce into the bottom - just enough to cover it. Then lay down a layer of noodles. Top the noodles with 1/2 of the potatoes. Then over the potatoes with more noodles. Top that noodle layer with sauce. Next spread all of the kale over the top of that sauce layer. Top with some more sauce and add a layer of noodles on top of it. Add the rest of the potatoes on top of the noodle layer. Top with more noodles. Now pour the remaining sauce over top. Sprinkle the top with paprika, cover and bake for 45 minutes.
Let the lasagna cool for at least 15 minutes and garnish with more chopped green onions if desired.