Short Rib Lasagna Rolls

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These are a unique twist on your typical lasagna and are sure-fire hit for any occasion.  I’ve made them for Christmas, a dinner party, and just a humble dinner for myself and all to rave reviews, especially from myself.

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I won’t pull any punches though…they require some work.  Short ribs stand in for ground beef here and you have to plan well ahead to braise your short ribs.  If you’re going to go all out, you might as well make your own tomato sauce too!

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Short ribs are the kind of meat that require a heavy dose of seasoning and a long, slow bath in the oven to bring out their tender side.  You can’t rush perfection.  But they are so so worth it, and one of my favorites.

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Anything cute and individually portioned is automatically superior to its whole form and I don’t think I’m alone in this opinion.  Give me my own cheesy pasta roll-up any day.

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SHORT RIB LASAGNA ROLLS

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

 

INGREDIENTS

SHORT RIBS:

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 pounds bone-in beef short ribs

1 small onion, roughly chopped

2 carrots, peeled and chopped into 1-inch pieces

4 to 5 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed

Two 4-inch sprigs fresh rosemary

3 sprigs fresh thyme

2-1/2 cups red wine, such as pinot noir or cabernet sauvignon

2-1/2 cups beef broth

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

FILLING:

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3/4 cup whole milk

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup ricotta cheese

1-1/2 cups finely grated Pecorino Romano (6 ounces)

1-1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded mozzarella, divided

One 10-ounce package frozen spinach, thawed, drained and excess liquid squeezed out

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

2 cloves garlic, minced

10 ounces lasagna noodles (about 12 noodles)

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Butter, for greasing baking dish

3 cups tomato sauce, homemade or store-bought

1/2 cup (2 ounces) freshly grated Parmesan

Olive oil, for drizzling

 

INSTRUCTIONS

In a large, heavy-bottomed Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.  Generously season the short ribs with salt and pepper.  Once the oil is hot, sear the ribs until browned, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.  You may have to do this in batches depending on the size of your pan.  Set the ribs aside.

Add the onions and season with salt; cook until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook until fragrant and softened, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.  Increase the heat to high and add the rosemary, thyme, wine and beef broth.  Return the short ribs to the pan and bring the mixture to a boil.  Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and cook until the short ribs are tender and falling off the bone, about 2-1/2 to 3 hours.  Set aside until cool enough to handle.  Once cool, remove the bones and shred the meat using your fingers or two forks, discarding any large pieces of fat.

Place the lasagna noodles in a 9 x 13-inch baking dish and cover with hot water.  Allow the noodles to sit in the water for 30 minutes, until softened.  Drain the noodles and reserve.

For the filling: In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.  Add the flour and whisk constantly to remove any lumps; cook for 2 to 3 minutes to cook the raw flour flavor out.  Add the milk and cream in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly to avoid lumps.  Simmer the sauce, whisking frequently, until thickened, about 4 to 6 minutes.  Reduce the heat to low and stir in the ricotta cheese, Pecorino, and 4 ounces mozzarella, and whisk until the cheese is melted and the sauce is smooth.  Remove the pan from the heat and add the drained spinach, basil, garlic and shredded meat.  Stir to combine.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Preheat the oven to 400°.  Dry the 9 x 13-inch baking dish used to soak the noodles.  Butter the bottom and sides of the dish.  Spread 1 cup of tomato sauce on the bottom of the dish.  Lay a lasagna noodle on a cutting board and spread about 1/3 cup of the filling evenly along the noodle.  Roll up tightly and place seam-side down in the baking dish.  Repeat with the remaining noodles.  Soon the remaining tomato sauce over the top and sprinkle with the reserved 2 ounces of mozzarella and the Parmesan cheese.  Drizzle with olive oil and bake until the lasagna rolls are heated through and the cheese is melted and brown, about 25 to 30 minutes.

 

Inspiration: Short Rib Lasagna Rolls on foodnetwork.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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