With the weather getting a little more chilly – it’s time to break out some cozy weather foods! I love Italian food and I definitely love cheese . . . so this recipe seemed like the obvious choice! This recipe has a few parts and is a little bit more complicated than my other recipes – however, you can really simplify this recipe by using your favorite jars of alfredo and marinara sauce.
This recipe combines two homemade sauces into one really fabulous sauce . . . You’ll need to make them seperately and combine later on.
What You Need (Marinara Sauce):
1/2 can of San Marzano Tomatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves (grated or chopped very finely)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon parsley
pinch of red pepper flakes
pinch of kosher salt
1/4 yellow onion, chopped
1 teaspoon of sugar
For this sauce, I got to use my new food processor which absolutely works like a dream! First, you’re going to want to take 1/2 of your can of tomatoes and process them until pureed. It doesn’t need to be completely smooth. A little roughness makes the sauce look pretty at the end.
Melt butter and combine your oil in a medium saucepan. Add in your garlic, oregano, onion, pepper flakes and salt and stir frequently for about 2 minutes – you want these ingredients fragrant but not browned all the way. At this point, throw in your tomato puree, parsley, salt and sugar. Bring to a simmer and reduce your heat down to low. Let this cook down and reduce for about an hour.
While this is going, you can go ahead and prepare your other sauce and ingredients for the lasagna rolls.
What You Need (Alfredo Sauce):
1/4 cup of heavy cream
1/2 stick of butter
2 tablespoons cream cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (pre-grated does NOT work – it gets gummy!)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
To make the alfredo sauce, combine heavy cream and butter in a saucepan. Simmer this until the butter melts and ingredients are combined. Go ahead and add in your parmesan cheese and garlic powder and simmer this on low for about 20 minutes. After it simmer for a bit, add in your cream cheese and stir until it is incorporated. You can leave this on low while your marinara is still simmering – just remember to check on it and stir every once in awhile.
Now, let’s get those lasagna rolls together.
What You Need (Lasagna Rolls):
6 lasagna noodles
1/4 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese (don’t get cheap here – get the good stuff!)
1/4 cup freshly grated mozzerella (this is hard to grate, so if it looks rough, it’s really fine)
2 thin slices of fontina cheese, cubed (optional)
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
sprinkle of salt and pepper
8 Ritz crackers
Alright, let’s get those noodles rolling – I feel like you know how to boil some noodles but just in case – boil water, add said noodles and cook for about 10 minutes. While those are cooking, let’s make your filling. Let’s preheat the oven now to 350 degrees now, too.
In a small bowl, combine your ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, mozzerella, italian seasoning and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. I just used a fork to really mash it up and get it combined. Save a little bit of mozzerella and parmesan to sprinkle on top. Go ahead and throw this in the fridge until your sauce and noodles are all done.
Now, on to combining the sauces . . . Like I said, this is where you can greatly simplify this recipe by using pre-made sauces – but trust me, these two homemade flavor combinations really do make a flavor difference!
Take your alfredo, give it a stir and pour it right into your marinara sauce. Stir them together until combined. If the sauce is a little thin, you could also throw a spoonful of ricotta cheese in there.
Take a spoonful or two of your sauce and spread it thinly into the bottom of your baking dish. Set the rest aside to pour over later.
Once your noodles are all done, drain them and rinse with cold water to make them cool enough to handle. I set myself up a little “station” to make the lasagna rolls using some parchment paper on the counter. Lay out a lasagna noodle on your parchment paper and spread filling down the middle from tip to tip. Start at one end and roll it up like a sleeping bag until it forms a little roll. Place in your baking pan with the widest part of the noodle on the bottom.
Repeat for each noodle and arrange in your baking dish.
Now, sprinkle your remaining mozzerella and parmesen cheese on top and cover with the rest of your sauce. I also added a little fontina to the top of mine for an extra kick of flavor!
I like a little bit of breadcrumb on top of mine but I hate pre-made breadcrumbs! The easiest way to make them is to take your Ritz crackers, put them in a ziplock bag with a little Italian seasoning and just crunch them up . . Voila! Go ahead and sprinkle this on top of everything.
Place in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes or until your sauce is bubbling. They are super easy to scoop out of the pan and plate!
Click here for alfredo sauce recipe.
Click here for marinara sauce recipe.
Click here for lasagna roll recipe.