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Drinks for a Crowd


Lasagne Bolognese with Spinach


Bolognese sauce:
1/4 cup olive oil
3 oz sliced pancetta, finely chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
1 celery rib, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 lb ground beef chuck
1 ½ cups dry white wine
1 ½ cups whole milk
¼ cup tomato paste
1 ½ t. thyme
Ricotta filling:
2 packs frozen chop spinach
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano
1/2 t. grated nutmeg
2 (15-oz) whole-milk ricotta
3/4 cup milk, divided
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
12 Barilla no-boil lasagna noodles
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano

Method: Preheat oven to 375°F with rack in middle.

  1. Heat oil in a skillet. Cook pancetta, onion, carrot, celery, and garlic, stirring, until vegetables are golden, ~12 minutes.
  2. Add beef and cook, stirring occasionally and breaking up any lumps, until meat is no longer pink, 6 to 10 minutes. Stir in wine, milk, tomato paste, thyme, 1/4 tsp salt, and 3/4 tsp pepper. Simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until liquid is gone.
  3. Make ricotta filling: Put spinach in a kitchen towel (not terry cloth) and twist to squeeze out as much moisture as possible. Whisk together ricotta, eggs, parmesan, nutmeg, 1 1/4 tsp salt, and 1 tsp pepper. Transfer 1 1/2 cups ricotta mixture to another bowl and whisk in 1/4 cup milk; set aside. Whisk spinach into remaining filling with remaining 1/2 cup milk.
  4. Soak noodles in a bowl of very warm water until pliable but not softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Place on a kitchen towel (it's not necessary to pat noodles dry).Spread 1 1/2 cups bolognese sauce in baking pan and sprinkle with 1 Tbsp parmesan. Cover with 3 noodles, leaving space in between.
  5. Spread half of spinach filling on top, then 1 cup bolognese sauce, and top with 1 Tbsp parmesan and 3 noodles; repeat. Top with remaining bolognese sauce, 1 Tbsp parmesan, and remaining 3 noodles. Pour reserved ricotta mixture over top and sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup parmesan.Cover pan tightly with parchment paper and foil (or just buttered foil) and bake 50 minutes. Remove foil and bake until top is browned in spots, about 15 minutes more. Let stand 15 to 30 minutes before cutting.