Lasagna Filing recipe and a Confession
My mother's family is Italian, and I do not use Ricotta Cheese in my lasagna!
Phew, glad I got that off my chest and hopefully none of my family disowns me (wink wink).
Now, don't get me wrong, I LOVE ricotta cheese, so much, I can just sit and eat it out of the container with a spoon (I may or may not have done that before). BUT, my hubby is not so much of a fan of the texture, though I do have one recipe I make, these Chicken and Spinach Stuffed Shells, that have ricotta in them, and everyone loves them.
When I discovered my hubby wasn't a fan of it, I needed to find some yummy alternative that would satisfy everyone. I cannot stand lasagna that uses Cottage Cheese as the main "cheese" and you can see the curds throughout...that just doesn't fly with me. However, in one of my very first cookbooks I ever received put out by Southern Living, I found a lasagna filling that looked promising, even though it did include cottage cheese. You can still find it on Amazon even though it was published in 1987.
I gave it a shot, and it satisfied everyone, even this ricotta loving girl. Is it your traditional lasagna recipe? No, but it is creamy, and just so good. I can eat this with a spoon (may or may not have done that....I won't confess).
Recently I have been reading a book called The Lost Ravioli Recipes of Hoboken. This book was recommended by a wonderful blogger Michelle over at Pen and Hive (she's a beekeeper and I'm fascinated by her bee stories and videos). Go check her out. Anyways when I was in NYC this last July with my daughter, we visited Hoboken. Michelle saw my IG photo in Hoboken and mentioned the book. I knew I just needed to buy it. I'm not quite done with it but it is an interesting true journey of a woman searching for authenticity in her family's ravioli recipe and something even deeper. It really got me thinking about all the different nationalities who have found there way here to the U.S. and how over the years maybe their original "authentic" recipes were adapted because maybe certain ingredients weren't available or maybe they wanted to be more "American". It's just very interesting. One of the things she was shocked was to find that in one of the ravioli recipes, cream cheese was used...WHAT! She couldn't believe it. The recipe I'm sharing today also uses cream cheese....WHAT! She also tried to learn the traditional way of making and rolling ravioli dough. She journeyed several times to Italy and experimented over and over again.
Nowadays with all the different eating preferences, it's not uncommon to find changes in recipes, even though many will try to keep it as close as possible to an original and others you just don't mess with. I have made homemade ravioli once, with my grandma, and I'd love to try it again. Find that recipe here. As I read the book I remembered stories that my mom would tell about her Italian grandma.
Anyways. I made lasagna Friday night for the first time in a long time. After I made it, I forgot to photograph the sliced lasagna and thought, well, I'll reheat it Saturday and do it then. Um, nope. I had left for a few hours and my family who was gone as well beat me home, heated it up and ate it. Haha! So, no, you will not get a sliced photograph. My family just doesn't wait around for a picture to be taken. You get what you get!
Okay, so here ya go! Try it, you just might like it.
2 (8oz.) pkgs. cream cheese, softened
2 c. small curd cottage cheese
1/4 c. parmesan cheese (more to taste)
1 Tbs. Parsley
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. Salt
Combine all ingredients in your mixer or food processor and mix until smooth. Give it a taste and add more seasonings and parmesan cheese as needed.
Assemble as you normally would a lasagna. This isn't thick, so it wouldn't really work for lasagna roll ups.
I just love this recipe.
With Joy Unquenchable,