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Photo: Hirsheimer & Hamilton
Layer atop layer of cheesy perfection.

The Cowgirl Creamery Cookbook is a must for any cheese-lover's kitchen. Packed with stories, recipes and plenty of other reasons to gorge yourself on fine cheese, the cowgirls' masterful new book is a great reason to neglect that brick of boring cheddar and open yourself up to something a little more exciting. This superb vegetarian lasagna, for example.

We layer a lasagna the same way we top a pizza — with a light hand. Forget about over­stuffed layers and an overflowing casserole dish. You want to scatter just enough cheese and vegetables on the layers to flavor, but not overwhelm. If you use fresh pasta that’s rolled very thin, you can even form eight or ten layers. With dried or thicker pasta sheets, you’ll want fewer layers.

This delicate vegetarian lasagna plays up the cheese, complementing it with the flavors of mushrooms and spinach. Try experimenting with different types of mushrooms, but salt them sparingly as the Parmesan acts as salt in this dish.

You can use any fresh mushrooms you like. Here we use a combination of two‑thirds crimini and one-third shiitake mushrooms for a good flavor without too much expense.

Don’t worry about the size of your pan. Just make sure the pans you choose are deep enough to hold at least five layers.

Reprinted with permission from Cowgirl Creamery Cooks