Copyright Thomas Saaristo  All Rights Reserved
Lasagna roll ups
Dinner party fare


For the sauce
4 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1/2 pound 80/20 ground beef, preferably organic
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
28 ounce can crushed tomatoes, fire-roasted recommended
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoon dried basil*
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon House salt
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, then to taste, optional
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, then to taste

For the filling
15 ounce container large curd cottage cheese
1 large egg + 1 egg yolk
1/3 cup chopped parsley
2 1/2 cups grated Mozzarella Cheese, freshly grated recommended, divided
3/4 cup freshly, finely grated Parmesan Cheese, divided
1/3 cup freshly, finely grated Romano Cheese
1 teaspoon House salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, then to taste

For final assembly
12 uncooked lasagna noodles


For the sauce
Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Bring a large pot of water to the boil

Heat a large sauté pan over medium high heat for 2 minutes. Add one tablespoon oil
and heat until shimmering and wisps of smoke just start to appear. Add the beef and
season lightly with salt. Break the meat up and add the onions. Cook, stirring
frequently and breaking up the meat as you cook until the onions are translucent and
begin to take on some color around the edges and the meat is truly browned and in
very small pieces, 25 to 30 minutes. Add the canned tomatoes, garlic, basil, oregano
and 1 teaspoon additional oil and season with salt, red pepper flakes (if using)and
pepper. Cover the pan with a splatter screen, drop the heat to medium low and
simmer while you prepare the filling and the noodles.

Add a handful of House or kosher salt slowly to the boiling water. Add the noodles
one at a time and give everything a big stir. Bring the water back up to the boil and
cook the noodles until al dente or according to the box for al dente noodles. Remove
the cooked noodle with tongs to a rimmed baking sheet(s) in a single layer, cover with
foil or waxed paper

Meanwhile, prepare the filling

Add the cottage cheese, egg, egg yolk, big pinch of House salt, and freshly ground
black pepper to a large bowl and whisk together until well combined. Add the parsley,
1 3/4 cups grated Mozzarella Cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese and 1/3 cup Romano
Cheese, stir mixture until well combined

Stir the meat sauce and spread 1/3 cup evenly into the bottom of a 13x9 inch baking
dish. Spread a generous 1/4 cup cheese filling evenly along the length of a cooked
lasagna noodle, then spread 1 heaping tablespoon meat sauce along the top of cheese
filling. Roll noodles up jellyroll style and arrange seam side down in baking dish. Cover
rolled noodles with remaining meat sauce (approximately a generous 1/8 cup over
each). Sprinkle remaining 3/4 cup Mozzarella Cheese and 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese
evenly over the top. Spray a large piece of foil with cooking spray and gently cover the
dish, cooking spray side down

Bake for 35 to 45 minutes. Remove the foil and bake another 10 minutes to brown the

Remove from the oven and let rest 15 minutes. Scatter the top with more freshly
chopped parsley

Serve Lasagna roll ups warm

*Use other/additional dried herbs like rosemary, thyme, crushed fennel seeds, etc