I’ve been craving artichokes lately so I pretty much made this up as I went along. It turned out great and was even better leftover.
It could have used a bit more white sauce than I made. When I came up short, I just added a bit of cream before I put it the oven.
I ended up using frozen artichoke hearts instead of the fresh ones shown here. They were just fine in this dish, so no need to go to the trouble of fresh.
After it was on the table, I thought that a bit of roasted red pepper would make a good addition next time around. It’d be easy enough to leave out the pancetta for a vegetarian version.
White Sauce, increased from how I actually made it this time around.
- 6 Tablespoons Butter
- 1/3 Cup Flour
- 3 Cups Milk
- 1 1/2 cups Cream
- 2 or 3 Shallots, minced. You can substitute a bit of sweet, yellow onion quite easily.
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Lasagna Noodles, the no-boil kind
- 1/2 Pound Pancetta
- 1 or 2 Packages Frozen Artichoke Hearts, thawed and drained
- 3 or 4 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 16 ounces Mozzarella
- 1 Cup Freshly Grated Parmesan
- 1/4 Cup Fresh Italian Parsley, snipped
- Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
Wake up the dog when you start puttering in the kitchen. She’ll wander in yawning and hoping you’ll drop some tasty treat or at the very least load the dishwasher and let her “help” by licking the dirty plates.
Mince the shallots or onion.
Melt the butter in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat.
Add the shallots and cook for a few minutes, until the shallots soften and turn translucent.
In the meantime, measure the milk and cream.
Stir the flour into the butter and shallot mixture.
Cook for a minute or two.
Slowly whisk in the milk/cream mixture. Let it cook over medium-low heat, stirring pretty often, until it’s thick. Remove from the heat, season with salt and pepper and set it aside.
Cook the pancetta over medium to medium high heat until it just starts to curl and get barely crisp around the edges. You want it pretty soft, not too crisp. Drain it on paper towels and set it aside.
In the same pan you used for the pancetta, add the minced garlic and artichokes to the pancetta grease. Stir over medium heat for a few minutes, until the garlic softens and everything is heated through and well-coated. Remove from heat and set aside.
Snip the parsley.
Grate the Parmesan.
Slice the mozzarella. It’s easier to slice if you stick it in the freezer for a few minutes first.
Coat the bottom of a baking dish with the white sauce and add a layer of lasagna noodles.
Add a layer of pancetta…
… and artichokes.
Add mozzarella slices.
Sprinkle with Parmesan, parsley and a bit of crushed red pepper.
Repeat with another layer or two. End with noodles and white sauce, sprinkled with Parmesan and parsley.
Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 45 minutes to an hour. Remove the foil and continue baking for another ten minutes or so, just to let the top gently brown.
Let it stand for a bit before serving. Enjoy!