I was going to title this post "Lazy Lasagna" because making this dish for 2 people is very easy and not time consuming. But, my girlfriend Marny's (she's a co-worker as well) birthday is tomorrow and 4 of my other friends/coworkers wanted to do something special for her. Instead of spending $$ on take out (remember I'm trying to budget here) I volunteered to make more than just 2 portions. I made 8. Not so bad but it was a little more time consuming than I thought it would be.
My husband does not like many vegetables. But I really wanted to make a spinach/ricotta/cheese mixture to roll up these babies. I decided he was just going to have to deal with it. I mean, come on, how well can you taste the spinach with all the gooey goodness of the cheese and meat sauce??
My recipe was increased to make 18 lasagna rolls, 2 for each person (including my husband for his dinner, and 2 for his lunch. The rest is up for grabs for the girls.)
They came out great, and as for my hubby, he loved them too. See, I told you you wouldn't taste the spinach Chad!The Sauce
1 1/2 lb. of lean ground beef
1 Tbs. olive oil
1 large tomato diced
1 14 oz. canned tomato sauce
1 Can beef broth
1 can tomato paste (the small one forgot the ounces)
1/2 large onion diced
1/2 a Green bell pepper diced
4 cloves garlic minced
1 Tbs. dried oregano
1 Tbs. dried basil
2 bay leaves
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoon of white sugar
In a dutch oven or large pot heat olive oil over medium heat. Add ground beef and let some of the fat render (about 2 minutes or so). Stir in onions and bell pepper, while breaking up the meat. Let saute for 3 minutes. Add garlic salt and pepper. When onions are translucent and beef is browned, drain and return to pan. Add tomato paste, beef broth, tomatoes, tomato sauce, dried herbs and sugar. stir to combine and let simmer for 1/2 hour.
While sauce is simmering Boil lasagna noodles according to package directions.
Spinach and Cheese filling
1 10 oz. package of frozen chopped spinach thawed and squeezed of excess water)
30 oz. (or more) of part skim ricotta
3 cups cups shredded mozzarella divided
2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese divided
1 tsp. grated nutmeg
little salt and pepper
Break eggs into a separate bowl and scramble. Add 2 cups of mozarella and 1 cup of the parm with the rest of the ingredients and mix well.
Preheat oven to 350
After noodles have been drained and sauce has been cooled a bit (taken off heat for about 10 minutes) you are ready to assemble.
lay one noodle flat use about a tablespoon of spinach filling and spread leaving about an inch from the ends. Top with a little meat sauce (try to use a slotted spoon to get more meat than sauce). Roll up one end and place in glass baking dish that has been doused with a little sauce on the bottom to prevent sticking.
Continue rolling until no noodles are left (or you run out of either sauce or filling!)
Top with remaining mozeralla and parmesan cheese and bake covered for 30 minutes. Take off cover the last five minutes so the cheese can get a nice brown color.