Monday, November 17, 2008

Spinach Ricotta Roll-ups in Pumpkin Sauce with a side of Gluten-Free News

I've watched newly famous actors on late night television marvel at their notoriety. There I was, putting filling up my pick up with unleaded 87 when this woman who'd been eyeing me for the past five minutes got this crazed look in her eye as she recognized me. She let out a big wail as she rushed me, asking for my autograph and if I'd father her next child. That stuff doesn't happen to me, I mean, I'm a regular Joe. And then Jay or Conan reminds them regular Joe's don't make multimillion dollar deals and star in movies with Jessica Alba. The star then laughs humbly, agreeing, but dazed...

My point is, you rarely get to determine if your a success, rather you know based on the opinions and actions of others. 

And while I've far from reached my celiac education and gluten free outreach goals, I'm glowingly proud say: Gluten Free In Cleveland was mentioned in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Ohio's largest newspaper. The article was about celiac disease and, while I was only listed as a resource in the side menu, it's still pretty exciting to be counted as a valid source of information. Even without me, the fact that the Plain Dealer ran an article about celiac disease is pretty darn exciting. You can read about it here, and a special thanks to the reader who emailed me to let me know that such an article had come out and that I was mentioned. 

News item number 2 comes from the North East Ohio Celiac Support Group. Get your aprons and oven mitts ready for their 8th annual Holiday Cookie Exchange, November 30th from 2 - 4 pm in the Independence Public Library. Bring 2 dozen cookies per person attending and multiple copies of your recipe, too. For more information check out their website, and get baking! 

Also, and I know its seriously last minute, but the Mustard Seed Market is having a Gluten-Free Baking & Cooking Class tonight (Monday the 17th) at 6:30. It's $15 and registration is required so call 1-440-519-3663 to register, and call quickly!

And finally, I bring you the latest of my pumpkin crazed kitchen experiments: Spinach Ricotta Roll-Ups in Pumpkin Sauce. A mouthful I know. But lately, due to a new strange but true digestive system issue, my delicate little celiac system isn't tolerating lots of other foods, mainly fats. Now if spending my autumn elbow deep in canned pumpkin has taught me anything, nothing heartys up a meal like my favorite fall squash. As heavy as the name sounds, these little roll ups were surprisingly light. 

(Low Fat) Spinach Ricotta Roll-Ups in Pumpkin Sauce

1 cup low fat ricotta cheese 
1 egg
2 -3 cloves chopped garlic 
several handfuls of fresh spinach
1 box gluten-free lasagna noodles

3/4 cup vegetable stock
1 Tablespoon of cornstarch
1/2 cup skim milk
1/3rd cup canned pumpkin
1/2 tablespoon of butter 
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
salt & pepper to taste
1 tablespoon pumpkin butter (optional, I happened to have it)

1 medium sized casserole dish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

In a large pot, cook the noodles within a minute of being done. Rinse with cold water, drain, set aside. 

Meanwhile, cook the spinach and garlic down in a large pan until the leaves are wilted and the garlic browns. Add salt, pepper, and nutmeg to taste. In a  food processor, blend the spinach, ricotta cheese, and the egg until just smooth. Over beating will cause the mixture to become runny. 

In a medium sauce pot, combine milk, cornstarch, vegetable broth, and butter. Simmer for 3 - 5 minutes. Stir in pumpkin until it dissolves into the sauce. Add pumpkin butter, nutmeg, salt and pepper to desired sweet or saltiness. 

To assemble the roll ups, wash hands thoroughly and get ready for a bit of a mess. Cut a lasagna noodle in half and, on a separate plate, spread the spinach-ricotta mixture over the noodle. Roll up the noodle and carefully place it in the pan. Repeat, repeat, and repeat until the noodles are gone or you've run out of room. 

Smoother the roll-ups in the pumpkin sauce and bake for 35 - 40 minutes. Serve with shredded Parmesan cheese and an adventurous attitude. 


Erin said...

I love pumpkin. I can't wait to try this recipe.

Anonymous said...

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Lynn Barry said...

This sounds delish! Thanks HUGS

Carrie said...

this sounds really delicious!! Very creative!

maybelle's mom said...

Congrats on the Plain D mention. This looks very delicious.

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