Friday, August 27, 2010
White Cheese Chicken Lasagna
• 1/2 cup butter
• 1 onion, chopped
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 2 cups chicken broth
• 1 1/2 cups milk
• 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
• 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
• 1 teaspoon dried basil
• 1 teaspoon dried oregano
• 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
• 2 cups ricotta cheese
• 2 cups cubed, cooked chicken meat
• 2 (10 ounce) packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
• 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
• 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese for topping
Salt & Pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain, and rinse with cold water.
2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Cook the onion and garlic in the butter until tender, stirring frequently. Stir in the flour and salt, and simmer until bubbly. Mix in the broth and milk, and boil, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Stir in 2 cups mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Season with the basil, oregano, and ground black pepper. Remove from heat, and set aside.
3. Spread 1/3 of the sauce mixture in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Layer with 1/3 of the noodles, the ricotta, and the chicken. Arrange 1/3 of the noodles over the chicken, and layer with 1/3 of the sauce mixture, spinach, and the remaining 2 cups mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese. Arrange remaining noodles over cheese, and spread remaining sauce evenly over noodles. Sprinkle with parsley and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.
4. Bake 35 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven.
I can't rave about this recipe enough! It was absolutely fabulous! I only added about 1 1/2 pks of the spinach, and mixed the spinach, ricotta & chicken together for easy layering. I used fresh (refrigerated), no-boil noodles and just let them cook in the sauce. I did add about 1/2 cup white wine to the sauce and added a lot more garlic. I did add almost twice the amount of ricotta and added a few extra cups of mozzerella. (There's no such thing as too much cheese in my house:)
I also tried fresh spinach in this recipe and it improved greatly. I de-stemmed the spinach (about 1 lb bag) and then threw it in a pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Cooked it down until it was tender and bright green. The frozen spinach is mostly stems, so substituting fresh spinach took care of that problem
Modifications: made 1/3 more sauce. Used only 1 package of spinach, which I mixed into the ricotta. I layered in the following way: 1/4 sauce, 3 noodles, 1/2 ricotta/spinach, 1/2 chicken, 1/4 of sauce, 1/3 of remaining mozz/parm, 3 noodles, rest of ricotta/spinach, rest of chicken, 1/4 of sauce, 1/3 of remaining mozz/parm, 3 noodles, rest of sauce, rest of mozz/parm, sprinkled with fresh parsley