Monday, September 21, 2009

Signature Lasagna Rolls

Everyone has that-one-dish. The dish that elicits reactions like: "Oh my gosh, she's making X for dinner! Yay!" and the dish that makes people take just one more helping. This, my friends, is my signature dish.

Well, to be technical, it's my mom's dish - she gave me the recipe after testing it a few times. Or Giada De Laurentiis' dish - she may have invented this... But with a recipe so handled and stained in olive oil drops from years of heavy use, the lines get kind of blurry...

I even made this dish for a "Heritage Food Night" where everyone was supposed to bring something from our cultural background, or that we grew up eating. Lasagna is Italian...so it works, right? Humor me, but try this dish. It will make you want it to be part of your heritage, too.

This is a spin on traditional lasagna. Lasagna rolls take the messiness out of serving dinner, making cute little packaged lasagna servings. And it's actually kind of fun to make! You just roll up each individual noodle, then bake it all together. A little more work, but really quite cute!

Lasagna Rolls
From Giada De Laurentiis, via my mom :)

Bechamel Sauce:
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 4 tsp flour
  • 1 1/4 c. whole milk
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
  • pinch ground nutmeg
Melt the butter in a heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and whisk until bubbly, about 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk and increase the heat to medium-high. Whisk the sauce until it comes to a simmer and thickens, about 3 minutes. Whisk the salt, pepper and nutmeg into the sauce. Pour it into a 9x13 glass baking dish and set aside.


Lasagna:
  • 1 15 oz container of whole milk ricotta cheese (or homemade!)
  • 1 10 oz package of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 1 cup (plus extra for topping) grated parmesan cheese
  • 3 oz thinly sliced prosciutto, chopped (I substituted turkey bacon this time, and it was delicious!)
  • 1 large egg, beaten to blend
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 12-15 uncooked lasagna noodles
  • 2-3 cups marinara sauce
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
Preheat the oven to 450 deg.

In a medium bowl, mix the ricotta, spinach, parmesan, prosciutto (or turkey bacon), egg, salt and pepper.

Boil a large pot of water with 2 tbsp olive oil. Boil the noodles until just tender, but still firm to bite. Drain and arrange on a baking sheet in a single layer.

Spread about 3 tbsp of the ricotta mixture evenly over each noodle. Starting at one end, roll the noodle like a jelly roll. Lay the roll seam-side down in the bechamel sauce in the baking dish. Repeat with all of the noodles, or until the baking dish is full. Spoon 2 cups of marinara sauce over the rolls, then sprinkle with the mozzarella and 2 tbsp (or so) of parmesan cheese. Cover tightly with foil and bake until heated through and the sauce bubbles, about 20 minutes. Uncover and bake until the cheeses on top become golden, about 15 minutes longer. Let stand for 10 minutes and then serve with additional heated marinara sauce, if desired.

Careful, this might become "your dish" too!

3 comments:

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  2. i like lasagna very VERY much. maybe enough that i might try making this. but first, i need to buy whole milk ricotta cheese, frozen chopped spinach, parmesan cheese,prosciutto, uncooked lasagna noodles,marinara sauce, shredded mozzarella, a baking sheet, flour, milk, nutmeg, and butter.

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  3. look at this copy cat!

    http://www.thekitchn.com/thekitchn/quick-weeknight-meals-2009/nicoles-spinach-lasagna-roll-ups-quick-weeknight-meals-recipe-contest-2009-096780

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