Thursday, March 22, 2007

Pesto Lasagna Rolls

Is there anyone on earth who doesn't like lasagna? Besides Garfield, I mean. Here is an alternative to traditional lasagna. A lighter, brighter and more interesting version - the lasagna roll.

Originally an old Sunset magazine recipe. The lasagna rolls were baked in whipping cream enriched with a jolt of pesto. Joan borrowed the preparation style, but added some spinach to increase the nutrients, cut way back on the cheese and used tomato sauce instead of whipping cream to cover the rolls.

12 lasagna noodles
1 jar (26 ounces) pasta sauce
or 3 cups homemade
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 container (15 ounces) ricotta cheese
1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach
thawed, squeezed dry
1 jar (3'/2 ounces) prepared pesto
1 egg
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper
1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions; drain.

Heat oven to 350°. Spread 2 cups of the tomato sauce in bottom of a greased 13-by-9-inch pan. Combine garlic, ricotta, spinach, pesto, egg, Parmesan, salt and pepper to taste in a bowl. Place a lasagna noodle on a clean kitchen towel; spread 1/4 cup of the ricotta mixture on the noodle. Roll noodle up; place seam-side down in pan. Repeat with remaining noodles. Pour remaining tomato sauce over noodles; sprinkle with mozzarella. Cover with foil; bake 20 minutes. Uncover; cook until cheese is golden brown, 10-15 minutes.

Makes 6 servings.

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