The other day I was in the mood for Italian food, but not spaghetti, fettuccine, or baked ziti. Something else….
I had one bunch of kale left over from my last Hometown Harvest bag, and thought maybe that would be tasty in a lasagna, sautéed first with some garlic and olive oil, and then added into the ricotta mixture. My vegetarian sister happened to be in town from Brooklyn (and eating with us!), so I thought she’d be a fan of the combo too.
I warmed the olive oil and minced the garlic. Then, I pulled the kale out from the fridge.
“Hmmm…this kale looks odd,” I thought.
Then, I quickly realized what I had leftover wasn’t kale at all! It was bok choy.
I decided to use it anyway.
- 12 lasagna noodles, cooked to al dente
- 3 tablespoons salted butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1-1/4 cup whole milk
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 bunch chopped fresh bok choy, spinach or kale
- 1 15-oz container of whole milk ricotta
- 1 large egg
- 1-1/2 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
- 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 cup marinara
InstructionsPreheat the oven to 425°F and use a tablespoon of butter to grease the bottom and sides of a 9x11" baking pan.For the bechamel sauce: melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a sauce pan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour until it's smooth, and then let it cook for 1 minute. Pour the milk in all at once, add 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper, and continue whisking until the bechamel becomes thick and bubbly. Pour it into the bottom of the buttered baking pan.Add the olive oil to a skillet over medium-high heat. Chiffonade the bok choy, then give it another quick dice - you should have around 2 cups' worth. Throw it into the skillet along with the garlic. Sauté the bok choy for 3 minutes, then add 1/4 cup of water, cover the skillet and let it cook for 10 minutes.Meanwhile, mix the ricotta, egg, 1/2 cup cheese, basil, oregano, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper together in a large bowl. Stir in the cooked bok choy.Spread 3-4 tablespoons of the ricotta mixture on one lasagna noodle. Roll it up like a jellyroll, starting on one of the short ends. Lay the lasagna roll seam side down in the baking pan, on top of the bechamel. Repeat with the remaining lasagna noodles.Top the lasagna rolls with the marinara, the remaining 1 cup of cheese and some more fresh basil. Cover the baking pan tightly with aluminum foil, and bake it for 20 minutes. Remove the cover and continue baking for 5 minutes longer, or until the cheese is melted, bubbly and golden.Leftovers reheat well, and the individual rolls will freeze great too.