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1 of a billion January 31, 2008

Filed under: food,recipes — Mox. @ 11:54 pm
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Winter Green Lasagna
Hands on time: 35 minutes; Total time: about 1.75 hours; Makes 8-10 servings

-2.5 pounds fresh kale, spinach, or another fresh green, or five 10-ounce boxes frozen chopped spinach, thawed
-4 Tbs. olive oil
-2 garlic cloves, minced
-1 tsp. kosher salt
-2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
-3 c. low-fat milk
-2 c. grated Parmesan or Romano, or a combination of the two
-2 15-ounce containers ricotta
-2 eggs, beaten
-Grated zest of 1 lemon
-1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
-1 16-ounce box no-boil lasagna noodles

    If using fresh greens, discard any tough stems and chop the leaves. Rinse and shake gently to remove most but not all of the water. Place 2 Tbs. of the oil in a large stockpot with the garlic and cook over medium-high heat. As soon as the garlic begins to brown, add the greens and toss. Add 1/2 tsp. of the salt. Cover immediately and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until very tender. (If using frozen spinach, press out the liquid, then saute the spinach in 2 Tbs. of the oil and the garlic for about 5 minutes.)Remove from heat and set aside to cool. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the remaining olive oil, the flour, and the remaining salt. Cook, whisking constantly, for about 3 minutes. Add the milk and increase heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens and boils, about 10 minutes. Stir in all but 1/2 c. of the grated cheese.
     Heat oven to 350 F. Coat a 13-by-9-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Blend the ricotta, eggs, lemon zest, and nutmeg into the greens. Spread about 1/2 cup of the cheese sauce in the bottom of the baking pan. Place 3 sheets of pasta on top. Spread on 1/4 of the spinach/greens filling and 1/2 cup of sauce, then another 3 sheets of pasta. Make 3 more layers. End with the pasta and sauce, and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Cover with foil and bake 45 minutes. Remove the foil and cook 15 minutes more or until golden. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. (Can be made up to 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Reheat in a 325 F oven for 20 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out hot.)

*Notes on this recipe: Honestly, I don’t like this recipe. I had made it before, but somehow the recipe made its way back into the box as a new recipe. J loves this stuff, but, being a caveman, says it really needs some meat, perhaps Italian sausage. I used fresh kale. Frozen spinach would be WAY less work, but less satisfaction (although I don’t know why I even bother with this recipe-seriously-I don’t like it. Maybe it goes against my lasagna beliefs?).