LASAGNE AI FRUTTA DI MARE Max cost £8.00, $13 Takes about 3 hours

Seafood Lasagne Serves 4-5 as a main course

I am sorry for the long wait for this dish, but it has taken time to put together a recipe that I am really happy with. It may seem long, but is really quite straightforward. I hope that you enjoy the result.
Seafood should always be fresh so I do not recommend preparing this dish in advance.


Prepare the green leaves by washing them in several changes of water (to remove any grit) and discard any coarse stalks. Place the leaves in a large pot of boiling salted water and cook for two minutes. Drain and refresh the leaves under running cold water. When they are cool, strain them and pat them dry with kitchen towel.

Place the clams/mussels in a bowl, cover with cold water and leave to soak for ten minutes. Discard the water - leaving the clams/mussels - and refill the bowl with fresh water. Scrub each of them thoroughly using a small stiff brush (a nail brush is ideal) remove any barnacles then place back in the bowl of water. When they have all been cleaned, drain and refresh the water and repeat the scrubbing process. If any of the clams/mussels are open, tap the shell with the handle of a knife. If any remain open throw them away. If using mussels remove their beards at this time.

Place the cleaned clams/mussels in a wide bottomed pan, cover and place on a high heat. After one to two minutes check them frequently and remove those that are open. When they have all opened up remove the pan from the heat. Detach the meat from the shells and set them aside in a dish (if clams/mussels are large cut them into three pieces). Place a couple of sheets of kitchen paper into a colander or sieve and carefully strain the clam/mussel juice into a bowl/jug.

Peel and de-vein the prawns (reserve the shells), then steam them (if raw) for one to two minutes over boiling water (this will become stock). Then steam the fish for five minutes and the scallops for three minutes (1 minute for queen scallops). The fish and seafood should be undercooked at this stage or they will be rendered inedible after baking. If the prawns are large cut them in half. Halve the scallops and break the fish fillets into flakes.

Add the reserved prawn shells, lemon and orange rind, wine, mussel/clam liquid and lemon juice to the boiling water and boil rapidly until you are left with about 120ml (4 fl oz). Strain and add to the béchamel sauce.

Heat half of the butter in a pan and gently fry the finely chopped onion until soft and a pale golden colour. Add to the béchamel sauce.

When you have finished rolling out the fresh pasta cut the resulting strips to the length required for your oven dish.

Cook the pasta sheets in plenty of boiling salted water until a little less than al dente (with freshly made pasta this will take a matter of 30 seconds). Then plunge the sheets into cold water for a minute to stop them cooking, rinse them under a cold tap to wash off any starch and drain them on kitchen towels.

Preheat the oven (if baking immediately). Grease the oven dish with the rest of the butter and line the bottom of the dish with a single layer of pasta strips (they should only just overlap). Over this place a thin layer of seafood, a layer of leaves and a thin coating of sauce. Repeat the procedure pasta/seafood/spinach/sauce finishing with a layer of pasta covered with sauce. Sprinkle with half of the Parmesan cheese and bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes.

Remove from the oven, allow to stand for ten minutes and serve with the remaining cheese.

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