This recipe from Food and Wine Magazine is both delicious and one to impress, albeit a fair bit of work. The original recipe calls for a Tomato Butter Sauce that I didn't include due to the copious amount of butter. Instead I substituted a simple tomato sauce made from scratch which worked fine, but a Bechamel or Alfredo sauce could work well.
If you don't have the fresh pasta sheets, dried lasagna noodles boiled according to package directions will suffice.
3-pound roasting chicken
cut in half
medium red onion
cut in half
(or ½ teaspoon dried)
extra-virgin olive oil
extra-virgin olive oil
dried Porcini mushrooms (about 1.25 cups)
mixed fresh mushrooms (button, shiitake or oyster)
sliced ¼ inch thick
chopped (or ½ teaspoon dried)
cut into ¼ inch dice
shredded (¼ pound)
Pecorino Romano cheese
freshly grated (4 to 5 ounces)
6x12 inch sheets fresh pasta
(recipe not included)
cut to 1-inch lengths
13-by-9-by-2-inch glass baking dish
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Season the cavity of the chicken with ⅛ teaspoon each of the salt and pepper and stuff with the lemon halves, onion halves, and the rosemary sprigs. Tie the legs together to close the cavity and rub the skin with 1 tablespoon of the oil and ⅛ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Set the chicken in the roasting pan and and roast for 1 hour to 70 minutes, until the juices run clear when a thigh is pricked. Let cool slightly, then remove all of the meat, tearing it into 1-inch chunks. Discard the bones, skin and fat; set the meat aside. (The chicken can be prepared up to 1 day ahead and refrigerated, covered.)
In a small bowl, soak the dried Porcini mushrooms in hot water to generously cover until softened, about 20 minutes. Drain and rinse carefully; pat dry and coursely chop. Set aside.
In a large nonreactive skillet, heat ⅓ cup of oil over moderately high heat until hot, about 2 minutes. Add the fresh mushrooms and the garlic and cook, stirring, until the mushrooms are softened, about 3 minutes. Add the reserved porcini and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach, reduce the heat to moderate and cook, stirring until almost all of the liquid has evaporated, about 10 minutes. Add the oregano, 1 teaspoon of the salt and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Remove from the heat and stir in the reserved chicken. Season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the diced mozzarella, ricotta, Romano, and basil.
In a large saucepan, combine the remaining 1 tablespoon salt with 4 quarts of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta sheets, one at a time, and boil until tender, about one and a half minutes. Using two slotted spoons or spatulas, carefully remove each sheet and transfer to a work surface. Using your fingers, coat each side with a little of the remaining olive oil to prevent sticking. Repeat with the 4 remaining sheets of pasta.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly oil the bottom of a 13-by-9-by-2-inch glass baking dish. Line the bottom of the dish with one layer of pasta using one sheet and portions of another to cover. Spread evenly with half of the cheese mixture and then cover with another layer of pasta. Spread all of the spinach-mushroom-chicken mixture on the pasta and cover with another layer of pasta. Spread with the remaining cheese mixture and top with a final layer of pasta. Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella on top. (The lasagna can be assembled 1 day ahead and refrigirated, covered.)
Bake the lasagna for about 30 minutes, until headed through. Do not let it come to a boil or the cheese will become rubbery.
Preheat the broiler. Broil the lasagna about 4 inches from the heat until the top is browned, about 1 minute. Cool for about 10 minutes before cutting into 6 portions.
Spoon a heaping ¼ cup of tomato sauce onto each of 6 warmed dinner plates. Place the lasagna in the center and garnish with the chives. Serve immediately with the remaining sauce passed separately.