Wednesday, February 18, 2015


If you ever need a dish that feeds several people and makes a pretty presentation, well then this is the recipe for you.  It tastes so delightful too!  It is easy to make, it just takes a little bit of time.

As with most of the recipes I get from cookbooks, I changed this one up.  I got the base recipe from Giada's Family Dinners and then made it my own.  The recipe called for prosciutto but I wanted it to be more substantial and meaty like a lasagna so I used ground sirloin mixed with Italian sausage.  Also, I used my own spaghetti sauce recipe.  It makes a lot so I was able to make the sauce, use it for this recipe and freeze 2 large containers for later.

When I am having company over and I want to make a recipe I have never made before I usually do a run through.  I make it ahead of time to see if it is good and what changes, if any, that I would like to make to it.  When I made it the first time, it was really good but as I was eating it, I thought, I know what would make the flavors in this pop.....Melted Garlic Butter drizzled over the lasagna!  I got almost giddy thinking about weird, I know!  I even made myself a note so I wouldn't forget to do it.  I was right too!!  Next time I am adding even more!   That butter and garlic added to the meat and cheese mixture just before I rolled up the lasagna noodles took this recipe from being great to awesome.  I mean, warm melted butter with fresh minced just doesn't get much better!  It's an easy recipe to double and I did that, but one lasagna roll was enough for me, along with a salad and garlic bread and then dessert.  A man might eat two and I would probably plan on two if you are serving men, but I think most women would only eat one especially if you are fixing other things to go along with it.

This is a great recipe to play around with.  My friend Babette made them this past weekend and she changed up the ingredients.  I will say that my husband was not fond of the spinach and ricotta, so next time I may just make them like regular lasagna.  One day I want to make veggie lasagna but I may have to give him some space before I break that out on him. Haha!

I am so glad my friend, Babette, took this picture of this step so you can see what they look like before they are rolled.

You really cannot mess up this recipe.  It is one of those that even if you make a mistake, no one will ever know!  Love those kind of recipes!! 

You have got to try this dish....just remember the Garlic Butter!!  Is your mouth-watering yet?

Preheat oven to 400 Degrees

Bechemel Sauce

3 tablespoons Butter
4 tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
1-1/4 cups Whole Milk
1 teaspoon Salt
1/8 teaspoon Freshly Ground Nutmeg

1 (15 ounce container Whole-Milk Ricotta Cheese
1 (10-ounce Box Frozen Chopped Spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese
1/2 pound Ground Sirloin
1/2 pound Ground Italian Sausage
1 large Egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon Salt, plus more for pasta
1/2 teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
12 dried Lasagna Noodles
1/4 cup Salt
1/2 cup Olive Oil
1 stick Butter
6 cloves Garlic
2-3 Cups Spaghetti Sauce (my recipe or jar spaghetti sauce)
1 cup shredded Mozzarella Cheese

Melt the butter in a medium heavy saucepan over medium-low heat.  Add the flour and cook for 3 minutes, whisking continuously.  Whisk in the milk.  Increase the heat to medium-high.  Whisk the sauce until it comes to a simmer and is thick and smooth, about 3 minutes.  Whisk in the salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

In a skillet over medium to high heat, brown the sirloin and the Italian sausage until it is cooked thoroughly.

In a medium bowl, stir together the ricotta, spinach, and 1 cup of the Parmesan  cheese, meat and sausage mixture, egg, the salt and the pepper, until well blended.

Melt butter and add minced garlic, mix well and set aside.

Bring a very large pot of water to a boil over high heat and add your salt and olive oil.   Add the lasagna noodles and cook until just tender, but still firm to the bite, stirring frequently to prevent the noodles from sticking together.  Keep an eye on these noodles so they do not get overdone because they will continue to cook in the oven.  Drain.  Arrange the noodles in a single layer on baking sheet to prevent them from sticking.  I actually just laid out some wax paper and placed the noodles on them. 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Butter a 13 X 9 X 2 baking glass baking dish.  Spread the cream sauce over the bottom of the prepared dish.

Lay out a lasagna noodle on a flat work surface, then spread about 3 tablespoons of the ricotta mixture evenly over each noodle.  Drizzle about 1-2 teaspoons of the garlic butter over the ricotta mixture. I didn't measure when I did mine and I think I used about 1 teaspoon.  I felt like it could of used more so next time I will use 2 teaspoons but I love garlic. Roll up the noodles and arrange the rolls, seam side down and not touching one another atop the cream sauce.  Repeat with the remaining noodles and ricotta mixture.  Spoon 1 cup of the spaghetti sauce over the lasagna rolls, sprinkle with a light amount of salt, then sprinkle with the mozzarella and remaining  2 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese. 

Cover the dish tightly with foil.  Bake until the rolls are heated through and the sauce bubbles, about 20 minutes.  Uncover and bake until the cheese on top is golden, about 15 minutes longer.  Let stand for 10 minutes.

Heat the remaining spaghetti sauce in a small, heavy saucepan over medium heat until hot. 

Transfer sauce to a sauceboat and serve alongside.


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