Lasagna con Crema di Broccoli - Lasagna with Cauliflower Cream
for the balsamella sauce
6 tablespoons (75 gr approximately) butter
3 oz (75 gr approximately) flour
3 1/4 cups (750 cc) milk
2 oz (60 gr) parmigiano reggiano, freshly grated
pinch of nutmeg

for the cauliflower filling
1 cauliflower, approximately 2 lb (1 kg)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 oz (60 gr) butter

for the lasagna
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
5 oz (150 gr) fresh mozzarella cheese, drained and diced
4 oz (120 gr) parmigiano reggiano cheese, freshly grated
prepare the “balsamella” (white sauce)
click here for the recipe using the quantities indicated above

prepare and cut the fresh pasta
click here for the recipe

Preparing the cauliflower filling
Clean the cauliflower (as indicated on the recipe at this link).

* Place the cauliflower in a pot full of boiling lightly salted water. Boil the cauliflower until tender but still firm. Drain thoroughly, transfer to a bowl, and coarsely mash them with a fork.
* Put 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil and 2 oz butter in a skillet. When the butter starts foaming,  add mashed cauliflower, and sauté until the broccoli are tender.
* Combine the balsamella sauce, adjust salt and pepper if necessary, and turn heat off.

Assembling the lasagna
Check on the recipe for the Lasagna Bolognese how to boil the pasta strips:
* Bring the water to a boil in a stockpot. Add salt and 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Prepare a separate container of cold water.
* Cook the pasta until al dente (firm but not too soft or overcooked). Check the manufacturer’s instruction for cooking time, but test a little piece for readiness from time to time.
* Remove the pasta with a slotted spoon, drop briefly in the cold water to stop the cooking process, and place in a colander to  drain.
* After the strips are drained, place them flat on a kitchen cloth and tap them gently with the cloth to dry.

* Preheat oven 350 F. Butter a flat oven pan approximately 9 x 12 inch (22 x 30 cm) and spread over it 2 – 3 tablespoons of cauliflower cream.
* Place one layer of pasta strips, spread some of the broccoli cream,  diced mozzarella and parmigiano reggiano cheese.
* Repeat the layers until all ingredients are used.
* Finish topping the last layer of pasta with diced mozzarella  and grated parmigiano cheese.  Place in the oven and cook for about 20 minutes or until golden. Serve it hot but let it set 5 minutes before serving.
To taste for readiness pierce the lasagna with a fork. When ready the  lasagna will be soft.

Lasagna can be conveniently prepared in advance, refrigerated or frozen, to cook at a later time.

The quantity of fresh pasta indicated in the recipe could be excessive for this dish. Leftovers of the flattened dough can be cut into a different shape (such as fettuccine) and used for a different preparation.