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  • Writer's pictureDavid

Lasagne alla Ligure - with green beans, potatoes and pesto

A vegetarian lasagne from the Liguria region.

The music, Reflect is here

This is the fourth and final recipe in our series on regional lasagne dishes. This is a vegetarian delight: green beans, potatoes slices and pesto genovese in a Béchamel sauce.

As I'm looking to present as authentic a recipe as possible, I will say I find this a little plain in truth; when I remake it, I'll add chilli flakes for a bit of bite.

In this series



green beans


fresh egg lasagne


Pesto Genovese

fresh basil



pine nuts

olive oil



plain flour





Watch the video


  • Cook the lasagne in boiling water for around 2 minutes, then put it in ice cold water to stop it cooking

  • Lay the sheets out on dish cloths and cover them to dry

  • Keep the pasta water

  • Peel the potatoes and slice them thickly

  • Top and tail the beans, and cut them into vaguely equal lengths

  • Cook the beans and potatoes in the boiling pasta water for about 5 minutes

  • Drain and set aside - reserving the water (again)

Pesto Genovese

  • NB - proper pesto Genovese is done with a mortar and pestle and takes a while. It also shouldn't be cooked when added to pasta. This version is blitzed, ad we're going to blast it in the oven anyway!

  • Pop the basil leaves in a bowl or jug

  • Add the garlic

  • Blitz for a bit - not to a paste

  • Add the parmesan, pine nuts and a goodly amount of olive oil

  • Blitz to a paste

  • Add the pasta water a little at a time, mixing as you go, until the pesto has a creamy, pourable consistency


  • The general ratio is equal amounts butter and flour, and those two should each be 10% of the milk

  • So...

  • 1 litre milk; 100g butter; 100g flour

  • Heat the milk, adding nutmeg and pepper. Whisk them through it

  • Do NOT let it boil!

  • Melt the butter, and add the flour, whisking it through thoroughly

  • It's important to incorporate ALL the flour into the roux (the paste you make with the butter and flour), otherwise you get a cooked four taste from the sauce - this is nowhere near as nice at it sounds...

  • Now... the classic French style is to gradually add the milk to the roux and keep whisking.

  • The classic Italian Béchamel procedure is to tip the roux into the milk and whisk it like mad - in a minute or two you have a thick sauce.

  • I prefer the Italian method.

  • If the sauce is too thin, make a little more roux in a pan and add it in, whisking as you go.

  • If the sauce is too thick, add milk - whisking as you go.

Lasagne - Assemble!!

  • A little Béchamel and pesto on the base of the dish

  • Layer of pasta

  • Layer of...

  • Béchamel

  • Pesto

  • Veggies

  • Parmesan & pecorino

  • Layer 2

  • Béchamel-pesto-veggies-parmesan/pecorino

  • Layer 3

  • Béchamel-pesto-veggies-parmesan/pecorino

  • Layer 4 - top layer

  • Béchamel-pesto-veggies-parmesan/pecorino

  • Sprinkle with pine nuts

  • 30-35 minutes at 180ºC

  • Leave to stand for 15 minutes before portioning

The music, Reflect is here

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