Let me be frank, lasagna is not a huge hit with me. I'm not sure exactly what it is about plain lasagna, but I would much prefer a hearty spaghetti or a baked creamy rigatoni or something like that...perhaps because lasagna is so labor intensive and when you serve it, it just falls apart...and that, to me, seems like a big shame.
SO, when I saw an idea for lasagna roll-ups, I was intrigued, and decided to make my own version, and let me tell you, LOVED it. Every bite, it was delicious!! I actually made this for a casual Christmas dinner this past year, and I would happily make it again anytime.
These Lasagna Roll-Ups use traditional lasagna noodles that are rolled up with a mixture of ricotta, parmesan cheese and spinach, and topped with a creamy bechemel and more parmesan and baked until bubbly and luscious.
What You'll Need
~1 box traditional lasagna noodles (the ones you boil)
~16 oz container of ricotta cheese
~1&1/2 cups shredded parmesan cheese
~2 cloves garlic, minced
~4 cups fresh spinach, chopped (this will wilt down)
~1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped OR 1 Tbs dried basil
~1 tsp dried oregano
~salt and pepper
~dash of nutmeg.
~3 cups of your favorite marinara sauce
~3 cups fresh bechemel sauce
What To Do
*Boil some water and toss in those lasagna noodles! Cook them until they are soft and pliable, but are still a touch underdone...you will be finishing these off in the oven, so you don't want them to be mush!
*While your noodles are cooking, saute the chopped spinach and garlic with the nutmeg in a touch of olive oil until the spinach has wilted down. Remove from heat to cool.
*Mix together your yummy filling: ricotta, egg, 3/4 cup parmesan cheese, basil, oregano, and salt and pepper to taste.
*Once the spinach has cooled a bit, add it to the ricotta mixture and mix it all together.
*Drain your noodles
*Prep a glass pan with some cooking spray and pour 1&1/2 cups of your marinara into the bottom of the pan.
*Take each lasagna noodle, and spread out about 1/4 cup of the mixture onto each one, leaving about an inch of space at one end (so when you roll it up, it has room to spread). ROLL that noodle up!
*Place each roll up into your pan with space in between, you don't want to pack them tight at all.
*A whole box of noodles and I used two glass pans, one 9x13 and one 8x11 (?)
*Top the lasagna roll-ups evenly and generously with the bechemel and sprinkle each with parmesan cheese
*Bake both pans at 400 degrees for about 50 minutes, or until the top is golden and bubbly.
I would let these beauties sit for about 10 minutes before you dig in, just to cool them a bit and let them set, so they don't fall apart. Serve with a salad and you've got dinner!!