Bite-Size Lasagna

Around our house, when we have some bit of information to share with each other, we’ve gotten in the habit of often asking, “Do you want the good news or the bad news first?”  Sometimes it’s best to hear the good news first because if it’s really good news it seems to lessen the blow of the bad news.  But other times it’s nice to hear the bad news first and get it over with.  Of course, all things are relative.  Our bad news is usually something like, “The bad news is the take-out restaurant was out of Kung Pao chicken.”  Which is usually followed by, “The good news is they had spring rolls 4 for a dollar so I got 8 of them.”

With this recipe, I feel the need to ask, “Do you want the good news or the bad news first?”  Since I can’t actually hear your response, I’ll have to answer for you and I’ll say “The good news.”

The good news is this recipe makes a really appetizing appetizer.  And it’s vegetarian, so doubly good news for a lot of people.

Lasagna Bites Ready for the Oven

Now for the bad news.  It takes some time to make them.  It took me about an hour to make a tray of 36.  And, the other bad news, which is sort of tied to the good news, is that 36 of these little buggers disappeared in about 5 minutes, so I probably should’ve made another couple dozen.  But, with all that bad news dropped at your feet, the other consideration is that you can make these ahead of time and then just bake them right before the party.  So, I’m going to file that last little tidbit under the “good news for a host or hostess” category, because you know I love recipes that can be prepped far enough in advance that I have time to do the cleanup before guests arrive.

Just a couple of hints/tips when making these.  The recipe calls for chopped spinach, which means the frozen stuff.  And you want to “drain” the liquid after the spinach has thawed.  This is always a bit of a challenge for me because I usually forget to thaw it ahead of time so I have to microwave it at the last minute.  I’ve found the best way to do all of this is to cut a slit in the box, place the whole box in a bowl, and then microwave it for a couple of minutes (or until thawed).  I then just squeeze the box until all of the liquid is out of it.  Not necessarily pretty — but pretty darn effective.

The other note is that you want to use enough filling so that each bite isn’t just noodle but not so much that you can’t roll them up or that they won’t stay rolled.  I found that about 2 tablespoons is the right amount.

This bite-size lasagna is a great cocktail hour or football game snack.  I’ve taken these lasagna bites to two different parties at my sister-in-law’s house.  In both cases, she had guests bring appetizers and she and my brother provided the martinis (their signature cocktail).  I love this concept for a party.  And, given the party atmosphere at the both of the parties, everyone else seemed to love the concept as well.  This is a great appetizer to take to a party like that.  Even though it took me about an hour to make them, this was my only contribution, so it wasn’t overwhelming.  You serve them warm out of the oven but they don’t require any sort of hot plate to keep them warm.  And, they appeal to a wide variety of tastes.

Happy Entertaining!

Chopped Spinach  Ready to Mix

Mixing the Ingredients

Spinach Mixture on Noodles

Ready to Roll

Starting to Roll  Rolling Lasagna Bites

Lasagna Bites

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