Served hot and bubbling, this truly indulgent treat is a creative and delicious way to make use of wild garlic pesto.
Wild garlic (Allium ursinum) is one of the joys of spring and lasagne is one of the most hearty and comforting dishes you can make — put them together and you have something deeply satisfying. The wild garlic in this dish is introduced in the form of a pesto, which is really quick to whizz up. Our wild garlic pesto recipe will make you enough, increasing proportions will give enough to also use as a pasta sauce, or in baked treats such as garlic pesto pinwheels.
Although wild garlic is milder than bulb garlic, when it is condensed into a pesto it takes on a more powerful, peppery hit that can really lend a dish some might. Meanwhile, the mushrooms in this recipe make it less heavy than a meat lasagne but still packed with umami. You can use wild or shop bought varieties — wild spring mushrooms such as grey oysters or fairy ring champignons would work well.
When foraging for wild garlic, remember it is in breach of the Wildlife and Countryside Act and Theft Act to uproot a plant without the landowner's permission, so avoid the bulbs and just take the leaves. Wild garlic does have a couple of poisonous lookalikes, so check our foraging guide for ID points. You can also read more about this awesome allium in our foraging focus.
Ingredients (serves four):
3 tbsp wild garlic pesto
1 large or banana shallot, diced
200g large mushrooms eg portobello or oyster
2 tbsp butter
Olive oil for frying
2 tbsp plain flour
1 tsp dijon mustard
- Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6. Melt the butter along with a splash of olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Fry shallots for a couple of minutes until translucent, then add the mushrooms and cook until soft and starting to caramelise.
- While the shallot and mushrooms are cooking, add the milk to a separate saucepan and bring to a simmer.
- Add a pinch of salt and then slowly sprinkle in the flour, whisking continually to avoid lumps. Keep stirring for a couple of minutes to allow the flour to cook off.
- Steadily ladle the milk and flour mixture into the pan with the mushrooms and shallots, stirring to mix as you go.
- Add 100g of cheddar and 200g of the mozzarella and stir to melt in.
- Add the wild garlic pesto and mustard. Season to taste.
- Ladle a third of the wild garlic and mushroom mixture into the bottom of a lasagne dish. Top with lasagne sheets. Repeat twice, spreading the mushrooms evenly in between each layer.
- Sprinkle the top with the remaining cheddar and chinks of mozzarella. Bake for approx 35 minutes until brown and bubbling.
Always stay safe when foraging. You need to be 100% sure of your identification, 100% sure that your foraged item is edible, and 100% sure that you are not allergic to it (it is good practice to always try a small amount of any new food you are consuming). If in doubt, leave it out!