Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Warm Up with Lasagna Roll-Ups!

Wow, it is FREEZING!!!!

So what's a girl to do (besides curl up in her fleece sheets and wait for it to be over)?

She makes something warm and gooey with whatever she can find in the fridge and pantry because she is NOT going outside. Something hot and bubbly, like a pan of lasagna roll-ups. It looks like lasagna and it tastes like lasagna, but it's more fun to eat -- and to make. And, who doesn't need a bit more fun in their lives? Especially when it is FREEZING outside!


There's no recipe for these. I boil the lasagna noodles and then spread a few spoonfuls of my filling across each individual noodle, then roll it up and place in a baking pan until it is filled. Then, I top with sauce and cheese, and bake in a 375 degree oven until browned and melty (30-45 mins). That's it!

Noodles: I used whole wheat lasagna noodles. Filling: Ground turkey breast (browned and crumbled), grilled artichokes (finely chopped), raw kale (finely chopped), garlic (minced), tomatoes (peeled, seeded and pureed), half and half, fresh ricotta, Romano cheese (grated thin), and mozzarella cheese (shredded), Italian seasoning mix, red pepper flakes (a dash), and salt/pepper to taste. I added the artichokes, kale, garlic and tomatoes and a couple tablespoons of the half and half to the just-browned turkey, then heated through so the flavors would mix. Then, I removed the pan from the heat and stirred in the cheeses and spices. Sauce: Tomato and garlic marinara (or your favorite jarred version). Toppings: More mozzarella and a dash of Italian seasoning mix.


Tip #1: Put the noodles into the boiling water one at a time, each crisscrossing the one below it. Keeps them from sticking. 
Tip #2: Put some sauce in the bottom of your baking pan before adding the roll-ups to prevent a baked-on mess later.

More tasty options for fillings/toppings:
  • Mix together shredded Provolone, thinly sliced/chopped Prosciutto and finely chopped broccoli florets. Roll up and top with an Alfredo-type sauce and bread crumbs.
  • Combine diced roasted eggplant, chopped spinach, fresh ricotta or goat cheese, and crumbled Italian sausage (cooked). Roll up and top with a spicy Arrabbiata sauce.
  • Change up taco night: Mix together cooked ground turkey breast or good quality ground beef, taco seasoning, sliced black olives, diced green peppers and shredded cheddar. Roll up and top with a jar of your favorite salsa and Pepper Jack cheese.
  • Meat-free: Try rolling up thin slices of fresh mozzarella and basil leaves, then top with a light marinara sauce.
  • Or, mix together fresh ricotta, goat cheese and smoked mozzarella (sliced thin), add a dash of nutmeg, and roll. Top with a light creamy sauce and more nutmeg -- or your favorite meatless tomato sauce -- decadent!
Stay warm!

xoxo

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