Well hello there old friend!! I’ve been busier than ever in Brooklyn – well, everywhere really! It’s been a whirlwind tour ever since the book came out in March and time just got away from me – but here I am, HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS. (Well I’m not actually home, but home is where the heart is, and it all started right. here.)
I always come back for the holidays because they have a special place in my heart, especially ones where we celebrate over dairy delights like Shavuot. Gimme all the cheese!!!! This sheet pan lasagna is going to change the game for you – from a layered patchke dish, to a simple on-pan main! I used cottage cheese because the creamy curds are having a trendy moment all over our social feeds (it stops at cottage cheese ice cream for me!!), but feel free to use ricotta as well.
Sheet Pan Lasagna
16oz lasagna sheets, broken into pieces
16oz whipped cottage cheese (or ricotta cheese)
1 clove of garlic, minced
Zest of half a lemon
2 frozen basil cubes
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp Freshly ground pepper or pinch red pepper flakes
1 egg yolk
1 26oz jar marinara sauce
12oz shredded cheese, divided
3 cups kale or spinach
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the lasagna and cook until al dente, 8-10 minutes, stirring so it doesn’t stick together.
While the pasta is cooking, combine the cottage cheese, garlic, lemon zest, basil, oregano, pepper and egg yolk in a bowl. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Drain the pasta and spread it out on a parchment lined baking sheet. Add the marinara sauce, kale, and 12oz. of cheese and stir to combine. Spread the noodles out on the baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Top with dollops of cottage cheese, the remaining shredded cheese and parmesan.
Bake the pasta until the edges of the kale and pasta are crisp and the cheese is bubbly, about 18-20 minutes.
I don’t know about you, but the only thing that keeps me from making blintzes on Shavuot is the crepe-making. The rest of the process is fairly easy, and I don’t even mind the light frying. But those crepes, man they are hard to nail down.
My mom so hates the crepe-making process that she’s been ordering her crepes ready-made from a caterer for years. Instead, she puts her attention on delicious homemade fillings – creamy potato with deeply caramelized onions and sweet cheese with an apricot sauce for dipping. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it!
I’m all for finding the easier way around dishes and this lasagna roll-up blintz hack is no exception! I love me some savory lasagna roll-ups, filled with spinach-flecked creamy ricotta and oozing with cheesy mozzarella, so why not go sweet, amIright? Dredging the sweet-filled pasta sheets in Corn Flake crumbs and frying them really takes it over the top, and I’m one happy crepe-free Momma.
What I really love about these decadent Shavuot treats is that they truly resemble blintzes, and if you want to stay away from the fryer, just go ahead and serve them up without the breading. You can add some chopped nuts for texture, and of course the requisite sour cream and strawberry sauce. Cuz blintzes without sour cream are a sad, sad thing.
Those of you that have been following my diet journey over on Instagram know that I’ve been staying away from delicious carby treats like these for the past couple of weeks, so I had to send them straight out of the house as soon as I was done making them. I don’t have the willpower to say no to a piping hot plate of sweet, crunchy, cheesy pasta rolls, do you? If your answer is yes, please tell me your secret ‘cuz I’m gonna need it come the cheesecake holiday.
We’re pretty low key when it comes to dairy in my house – I only serve it once a week, and it’s usually pizza, mac ‘n cheese or baked ziti. But Shavuot? Shavuot is the time for cheesy French onion soup, 4-cheese lasagna, a cheese board of your dreams, and of course plenty of cheesecake and blintzes. And lets not forget the dairy ice cream either. G-d help me survive this decadent holiday!
I’m pretty stoked to be hosting my mom for the first time this year – she’s usually the one who hosts, so I better get my menu planned. Stay tuned, I’ll share it with you soon. In the meantime, have a look at the Index for some inspiration!
Lets get rollin’!
Lasagna Roll-Up Blintzes
1 package lasagna noodles
16oz. ricotta cheese
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 egg yolk
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon juice
pinch of salt
3 tbsp heavy cream or whole milk
3 cup Corn Flake crumbs
canola oil, for frying
powder sugar, for dusting
Cook the lasagna noodles according to the package directions. Drain and spread the noodles on a light greased surface. In a large bowl, mix the ricotta cheese, cream cheese, egg yolk, sugar, vanilla, lemon juice and salt.
Spread a heaping spoonful of the cheese mixture over each lasagna noodle and roll the noodles up. Place seam side down on a baking sheet and freeze for 30 minutes.
In a shallow bowl, beat the eggs and heavy cream. In a second shallow bowl, add the Corn Flake crumbs and season with a pinch of salt.
Remove the roll-ups from the freezer and dip each roll in eggs and then cornflake crumbs, shaking off the excess each time. Work with a few at a time so that the rolls don’t start to defrost and lose their shape. Return the rolls to the freezer until you are ready to fry.
Heat a few inches of oil in a skillet and fry the rollups, turning so that all the sides are browned. Drain on paper towels.
Dust the rolls generously with powdered sugar and serve with strawberry sauce.
– If you desire a smooth cheese filling, blend the cheese mixture in a food processor or blender (you may not need all the lasagna noodles as the volume of the cheese will decrease).
– Use equal parts graham cracker crumbs and Corn Flake crumbs for a sweeter breading.
– Serve with your favorite warmed jam or pie filling.
16oz frozen strawberries
2 tbsp sugar, or, to taste
1 tsp lemon juice
Add the ingredients to a small saucepan and cook until the strawberries are soft. Mash the berries with a fork to break them up and cook over low heat until thickened. If desired, blend with an immersion blender or serve chunky. Adjust sweetness according to your taste and the sweetness of the fruit.
I remember the first time I got my hands on some REAL parmesan cheese. Growing up, that triangle of salty, nutty goodness wasn’t available on the kosher market. If you wanted parmesan, you had to buy a jar of mass produced parmesan sprinkles that lasts for a year in your fridge. The only kosher “cholov yisroel” options available were the standard American cheese, mozzarella, cheddar and some pepper jack, if you were lucky.
Enter Natural & Kosher cheese; kosher cheese revolutionaries. Natural & Kosher introduced the finest artisanal cheeses to the kosher market, including parmesan (wedges or grated), brie, fresh mozzarella, gouda and an array of goat cheese flavors (cranberry pecan, anyone?). Pair that with their classics like American cheese, mozzarella, cheddar, pepper jack, and meunster and you’ve got a company made in cheesy heaven!
When I was presented the opportunity to work with Natural & Kosher cheese, I grabbed their cheese and ran with it! Nothing makes me happier than working with fine quality ingredients that bring amazing flavor to my dishes- and cheesy goodness to my meals!
While I’m a big fan of cheesy dishes like lasagna, I’m not very fond of the presentation factor. Let’s face it – lasagna ain’t pretty! Or at least it wasn’t…until now. Individual lasagna roll-ups make the classic dish simple to serve and eat! Single servings also make it easier to keep track of how much you’re actually eating. ‘Cuz when you’re eating lasagna, we all lose track of our calorie count.
lasagna noodles (about 10)
1 jar marinara sauce
8 oz. Natural & Kosher shredded mozzarella, divided
1 15oz. container ricotta or reduced fat cottage cheese
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup Natural & Kosher shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup Natural & Kosher shredded Parmesan
1/2 tsp lemon zest, optional
salt and pepper, to taste
1 10oz. pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed to remove water
fresh basil, for garnish
Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain and lay the noodles onto parchment paper or aluminum foil (so that they don’t stick together). In a bowl, mix all the filling ingredients until incorporated. Spread the filling onto the lasagna noodles and roll them up. Pour some marinara sauce into the bottom of a 9×13 pan and top it with the roll ups. Pour additional marinara over the roll-ups and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Bake, covered, at 425 degrees until heated through (about 20 minutes). Uncover and bake until the cheese is bubbly and slightly browned around the edges. Garnish with basil.
With the nine days* upon us, we’re all looking for a quick fix dairy dinner that doesn’t require oven time. At least here in Brooklyn, where the weather has been stifling hot and humid. A nice big salad would make for the perfect meal, but I’ve got kids to feed, and salad is just not gonna cut it. My kids adore lasagna, but all that prep and cooking time is too much on these long summer days. My solution? a one-pot pasta dinner with all the lasagna components. The best part is, you can customize it to include all your favorite lasagna fillings. I knew I did well when I served this up and my daughter’s first words were “this tastes like Bubby’s lasagna!” Use store-bought marinara to save on prep time, or prepare your own original recipe.
What recipes are you serving up during the Nine Days? On my menu this week:
Monday: baked ziti and greek salad Tuesday: crispy beer battered fish tacos from The Shiksa Wednesday: light eggplant parmesan (no breading) Thursday: quesadillas with assorted fillings
*The Nine Days is a mourning period over the destruction of the Holy Temple. During this time, observant Jews abstain from eating meat and drinking wine as well as other joyous activities.
1 box linguini pasta, cooked al dente (see package instructions)
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 cups chopped spinach (if frozen, thaw and squeeze out water)
salt and pepper, to taste
1 jar marinara sauce
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp basil
1 tsp sugar, optional
1 8oz. container cottage cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Heat up oil in a skillet and add garlic. Saute until fragrant, but not browned. Add spinach and saute for a few minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add marinara sauce, basil, oregano and sugar and bring to a boil. With tongs, toss the linguini into the sauce and stir in cottage cheese and mozzarella. Serve immediately.
Variation: For a fun twist on traditional lasagna, break a few lasagna sheets into pieces. Cook until al dente. Use in place of linguini and mix with remaining ingredients.