Baked Pasta With Artichokes, Greens, & Too Much Cheese
Serves 6 to 8
"I’ll come right out and say that I’m really not into béchamel. Cooked ﬂour with milk is just not my thing. Plus, to be honest, it’s really annoying to make (all that whisking, the splattering—no thanks!). So instead of calling this a lasagne, which traditionally is made with béchamel, I’m calling it a baked pasta. Use lasagna noodles, use campanelle, use elbows, use any pasta you like. I won’t judge.
This dish will only be as good as the cheese you use. Cheap ricotta just isn’t going to cut it here, so seek out the kind that is fresh and most deﬁnitely full-fat. As for the artichoke hearts, using the marinated variety, in all their tangy glory, will make the whole dish seem a little more well seasoned, but non-marinated artichokes will also do, because with all that cheese, it’s hard to go wrong. Oh, and yes: This is spinach artichoke dip in pasta form. You’re welcome."
12 sheets lasagna noodles, fresh or dried, or 12 oz. pasta
4 tbsp olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
Freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch spinach (about 10 oz.), stems removed, leaves chopped (about 3 cups)
1 bunch kale (about 8 oz.), stems removed, leaves chopped (about 4 cups)
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 (14 oz.) jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
2 cups fresh full-fat ricotta cheese
½ cup heavy cream
2 cups finely grated Parmesan or pecorino cheese (about 4 ounces), plus more as needed
8 oz. good mozzarella cheese, shredded
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
2. Working in batches, cook the sheets of pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water (if you crowd the pot, they will most deﬁnitely stick together), just to al dente, 5 to 8 minutes, depending on the brand and type of pasta; if you’re using fresh pasta, it’ll be more like 30 to 60 seconds, just enough to soften.
3. Once it’s ready, transfer each sheet, one by one, to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet. Don’t let the pasta sheets touch or they’ll stick together and your blood pressure will rise trying to get them apart (a truly impossible task). Drizzle a small amount of olive oil onto each sheet of pasta before separating each layer with paper towels. Set aside while you prepare the ﬁlling.
4. Heat 2 tbsp of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is totally softened and deeply caramelized, 15 to 20 minutes.
5. Working in batches, add handfuls of greens to the skillet, seasoning with salt and pepper and letting them wilt down before adding the next handful (when the skillet becomes too crowded even after wilting, transfer cooked greens to a bowl and continue wilting raw greens in the skillet). Once your last batch of greens has ﬁnished cooking, add the garlic and any cooked greens you set aside and toss to coat. Add the artichoke hearts and mix well; set aside.
6. Mix the ricotta, cream, and Parmesan together in a medium bowl; season with salt and pepper.
7. Drizzle olive oil into the bottom of a 9×13 in. or 3 qt. baking dish. Place a layer of cooked pasta on the bottom and top with one-third of the ricotta mixture. Top with one-third of the greens and artichokes, and top that with one-third of the mozzarella. Repeat until you have a layer of pasta on the top. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle more Parmesan over the top.
8. Cover with foil and bake until everything is warmed through and the cheese has started to melt, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the foil and raise the oven temperature to 500°F. Bake until the top is browned and the ﬁlling is bubbling along the edges, 8 to 10 minutes longer. Let cool slightly before slicing and eating.
Reprinted from Dining In: Highly Cookable Recipes. Copyright © 2017 by Alison Roman. Photographs copyright © 2017 by Michael Graydon and Nikole Herriott. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.