Saturday, January 19, 2013

Winner Winner Spinach Lasagna Dinner

So I have been cooking a ton lately. My new years resolution was not to lose weight but to simply take better care of myself. This means putting myself first and not only cooking for my family but actually taking the time to cook for myself. I never took the time to cook breakfast for myself or lunch. I have been trying a lot of new healthy recipes this week and I have been over the moon excited about the results. I want to eat cleaner and healthier but I want my family to eat with me and to be honest that shit needs to be delicious. Don't come at me with a 7 grain sunflower seeds buckwheat bread. Its not realistic for me because I just think that stuff is gross. If I am going to eat bread its going to be white, sourdough and preferably with a crusty crust :) Having said that I have been trying to find simple alternatives that hopefully the children and the husband wouldn't turn their nose to. Cue Americans Test Kitchen Spinach Lasagna. This book is INCREDIBLE and everything that I have made has been spot on and well received by the boys. Like most moms I dont have time for recipes that dont work! A lot of people asked for the recipe and rather than sending a facebook message and subjecting everyone to a bazillion replies I thought I'd share it here. I checked this book out from the library but will definitely be buying it and I already ordered their other healthy recipe book.

Source:Light & Healthy 2010: The Year's Best Recipes Lightened Up

Calories 350
Fat: 14g
Sat Fat: 7g
Cholesterol: 70mg


1 onion, minced
1 tsp canola oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups 1% milk
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
2 tbs cornstarch
2 (10oz) packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeeze dry and finely chop
1 oz grated parmesan cheese (around a 1/2 cup)


8 oz whole-milk cottage cheese (about 1 cup) dont freak out i thought it was weird too but it works
1 large egg
1/4 tsp salt
12 no-boil lasagna noodles  (I used Barilla)
2 oz grated parmesan cheese (about 1 cup)
vegetable oil spray (i used my misto and sprayed olive oil)
6 oz fontina Italian fontina cheese, shredded (i used whole milk mozarella it was just easier to find and i didnt want to go to another store)


For the sauce:
1. Combine the onion, oil and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a large saucepan. Cover and cook on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until soft, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant (30 seconds). Stir in 2 3/4 cups of milk, bay leaves and nutmeg. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat. 

2. Whisk the cornstarch and remaining 1/4 cup milk together, then whisk into the pot. Continue to simmer, whisking constantly until thickened, about 6 minutes. Remove from heat and discard the bay leaves. Stir in the spinach and Parmesan until incorporated and no clumps of spinach remain.  Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover to keep warm and set it aside.

For the layers:
3. Position oven rack 6" from broiler element, adjust a second oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 425º.

4. Process the cottage cheese, egg, and salt in a food processor until very smooth. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

5. Pour 1" of boiling water in a 13x9 baking dish, then add noodles one at a time. Let the noodles soak about 5 minutes and use a knife to separate them so they dont stick. Remove the noodles from the water and place them in a single layer on a kitchen towel. Discard the water, dry the baking dish and coat the inside with vegetable oil spray.

6. Spread 1/2 cup of the sauce evenly over the bottom of the baking disk. Position 3 noodles on top of the sauce. Spread 3/4 cup more sauce evenly oer the noodles, sprinkle with the parmesan, and top with 3 more noodles. Spread 3/4 cup more sauce evenly over the noodles, sprinkle with 3/4 cup of fontina, and top with 3 more noodles. Spread 3/4 cup more sauce evenly over the noodles, followed by the cottage cheese mixture.  Finish with remaining 3/4 cup fontina.

7. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake the lasagna on the middle oven rack for 20 minutes. Remove the baking dish from the oven and remove the foil. Heat the broiler and broil the lasagna until the cheese is browning about 4 to 6 minutes. Let it cool for 15 min before serving (its hard but really let it or it will be difficult to cut and serve. 

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