Swap traditional ragù in favour of chicken and a combination of girolle and chanterelle mushrooms for a silky, luxurious lasagne.
For the cheese sauce:
4 tbsp plain flour
60g Comté, grated
40g Parmesan, grated
A pinch of white pepper
For the chicken and mushroom filling:
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 shallot, peeled and finely sliced
A few sprigs of thyme
260g cooked chicken, sliced or shredded
200g girolle mushrooms
50g chanterelle mushrooms
50ml white wine
80ml double cream
Small handful of parsley, chopped
8 fresh lasagne sheets (10cm x 9cm), cut into halves
40g Parmesan, grated
20g Comté, grated
1. To make the cheese sauce, melt the butter in a medium-sized pan and add the plain flour. Stir well until the butter and flour have turned into a thick paste, then add a little milk. Mix well and add the rest of the milk gradually, ensuring there are no lumps. Then stir in the grated cheese and add a pinch of salt and the white pepper. Set aside.
2. For the filling, melt the butter in a large frying pan and cook the garlic and shallots for 1 minute. Add the thyme and cooked chicken, season with salt and black pepper, then add the mushrooms and heat through for about 3 minutes. Stir in the white wine and heat until the alcohol has evaporated, then pour in the cream, stir lightly and cook for a further minute. Season with black pepper, add the chopped parsley and set aside.
3. Fill a large pan with 2–3 litres of water, add 1 teaspoon of salt and bring to the boil. Cook the pasta sheets in the boiling water, following the instructions on the packet (with fresh lasagne this is usually 20–30 seconds per sheet).
4. Spread 1 tablespoon of the cheese sauce on each of 4 heatproof plates. For each serving, lay a cooked pasta sheet over the sauce, add a generous tablespoonful of the chicken-and-mushroom mixture, then a light layer of Parmesan. Create two more layers, ending with a lasagne sheet; then cover each of the four top layers with more cheese sauce, the remaining Parmesan and the Comté. Add black pepper to taste.
5. Cook the open lasagne under a hot grill until the top is lightly browned (about 3 minutes). Alternatively, if you’re planning to serve the lasagne later, cook it in a preheated oven (200°C/400°F/Gas 6) for 20–25 minutes, again until the top is browned.
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