Going Italian

My favorite dishes to make for dinner are all Italian, which is not surprising to anyone. Doug swears I have Italian in me, because whenever I make something Italian it always come out perfect. So, I am going to share two favorites in my house, both Doug and Logan love these dishes. Every time anything with a marinara sauce comes to the table Logan starts clapping. However, the dishes I made this morning are going in the freezer, since I discovered my supply outside had been eaten.

Last night I realized I had no Alfredo/Bechamel sauce in the pantry, so I decided to make one from scratch(for the first time) since I needed it as the base for both dishes. I got out my recipe binder, and found the version that I wanted to use. As I love all things Disney, I chose the recipe for Tutto Italia’s Bechamel Sauce. Doug and I had eaten there on our trip to Disneyworld 2 years ago, and loved it, so I figured it would be amazing. I was not wrong! The entire time I kept telling Doug how amazing it smelled, he actually said he wanted to take a bath in the sauce(awkward moment), so I made him taste it first. To my delight he loved it.

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The sauce takes awhile to make, and you have to watch it the entire time. However, it is worth the effort, and I will not be buying anymore jarred Alfredo sauces anymore.

Tutto Italia Bechamel Sauce (4 servings)

– 2 cups whole milk

– 2 Tblsp. flour

– 2 Tblsp Butter

– pinch nutmeg

– pinch black or white pepper (I used black)

– 1 garlic clove

– salt to taste

In a sauce pot melt butter over medium heat, once melted add the flour. Mix completely and cook for at least one minute stirring constantly. Add the milk using a whisk, then gently bring to a boil. Once at a boil, reduce to simmer and add rest of the ingredients. Cook stirring occasionally, for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the sauce sticks to the spoon and a clean line can be made through it.

Now let’s move on to the main dishes!

The first thing I did was make the Ricotta filling since I use it in both dishes.

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Ricotta Mixture Recipe

– 1 – 15 oz Part Skim RIcotta

– 1/4 cup spinach

– 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese

– 2 egg white or 1 whole egg

– pinch of each salt, pepper, and oregano

Lasagna Rolls Ups are Logan’s favorite of the two dishes I made. They are easy for him to  eat, and I can sneak in extra vegetables without him realizing.

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This is a half recipe (3 servings), but the recipe below is a full recipe (6 servings).

Lasagna Roll Ups (6 servings)

– 3/4 cup Ricotta mixture

– 12 whole wheat lasagna noodles

– 2 cups marinara sauce

– 3/4 cup Alfredo/Bechamel sauce (of choice)

– 1/2 cup mozzarella

Preheat oven to 450 degrees and spray 9×13 baking dish.

Cook noodles in large pot until halfway cooked. Lay out on a cookie sheet, and let set 5 minutes.Pour alfredo sauce into dish. After setting, spoon the ricotta mixture evenly among the 12 noodles, then roll them up. Gently place in the baking dish, and top with marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese.

Cover and bake 20 minutes, and remove the cover. Bake another 15 minutes. Once done, let sit 10 minutes before serving.

The next recipe is my favorite, but it has my favorite pasta in it so I may be biased.

Baked Rigatoni

– 1 lb ground turkey (or beef)

– 1/2 onion, chopped

– 1 garlic clove, minced

– 1 1/2 cups marinara sauce

– 1/2 Alfredo/ Bechamel sauce

– 1 cup ricotta mixture

– 1 cup mozzarella

– 4 cups cooked Rigatoni Pasta (2 1/2 cups dry pasta)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees, and spray 9×13 baking dish.

Cook pasta according to directions on box.

In a large skillet, cook turkey, onion, and garlic until meat is not longer pink. Add marinara sauce, and allow to heat through. Once heated transfer to a large bowl, add the cooked pasta to the sauce mixture.

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Spread Alfredo sauce in the bottom of dish. Add half sauce mixture, then half of ricotta mixture. Add the other half of sauce mixture, then rest of ricotta mixture. Top with mozzarella cheese. Bake uncovered 30 minutes, or until bubbly.

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I put it in two baking dishes since the recipe is for 8 servings.

 

 

 

 

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