Meatless Mains

Red Pepper Lasagna Tom & Kari

4 medium red sweet peppers
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup snipped parsley
4 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3 cups milk
12 lasagna noodles
1 & 1/4 cups finely shredded Parmesan cheese

For red pepper sauce, halve red peppers; remove stems, seeds and membranes. Place peppers, cut side down, on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake at 425 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until skin is bubbly and browned. Wrap peppers in the foil; let stand 20-30 minutes or until cool enough to handle. Peel skin from peppers. Cut peppers into thin strips.

In large saucepan, cook red peppers in hot oil over medium heat for 1 minute. Stir in undrained tomatoes, parsley, garlic and black pepper. Bring to boiling, reduce heat. Simmer uncovered for 20 minutes, stirring often. Set aside to cool.

For béchamel sauce, in medium saucepan, melt butter. Stir in flour, salt and nutmeg until smooth. Add milk all at once. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir 1 minute more. Set aside to cool.

Prepare noodles according to package instructions. Grease bottom of a 3-quart rectangular baking dish. Cover bottom with about 1/4 of the noodles, trimming as necessary. Spread about 1 1/4 cups of the red pepper sauce over the pasta. Drizzle about 3/4 cup béchamel sauce over red pepper sauce; sprinkle with about 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat twice more with pasta, red pepper sauce, béchamel sauce and Parmesan cheese. Top with remaining pasta and béchamel sauce; sprinkle remaining Parmesan cheese. Bake uncovered in a 350-degree oven for 30-35 minutes until bubbly and light brown on top. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Make ahead: Assemble as directed. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate up to 24 hours. To serve, remove plastic wrap and cover with foil. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 30 minutes. Remove foil. Bake an additional 15-25 minutes more until bubbly.

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