Saturday, December 30, 2006
In the course of making the spinach lasagna for my holiday guests, I reflected on the concept of "no-boil" lasagna noodles. (Wow, that made it sound like I was peacefully cooking, everything on time and organized instead of dropping things on the floor, burning my hands and praying that everybody would show up an hour late... I suppose the truth is somewhere in between.)
Anyway, I'd like to offer you, dear reader, a challenge, your own Holy Grail if you will: find me the lasagna noodles that DO have to be boiled first. I posit that in fact, there is no such thing. They are all no-boil! Many years ago in a frantic moment before a Valentine's Day Comfort Food Party, I threw my uncooked, very ruffly lasagna noodles into the baking dish and prayed it would not be a crunchy dinner. You know what? It was better than usual.
Back when I boiled the noodles first, the lasagna usually had a swimming pool of tomato water, ick. Who wants soupy lasagna? Dried noodles are ruffled sponges that essentially suck up sauce as the dish bakes. Plus, which would be tastier: noodles boiled in water or those "boiled" in tomato sauce? Come on.
My artistic interpretation (love the new camera!):
Lastly, "no-boil" noodles cost more. It's entirely possible the myth that only special pasta could go in unboiled was dreamt up by a desperate ad exec for the Barilla company who had to figure out a way to charge more money without actually changing the product.
So let me know if you find a noodle that disproves this theory... I'm willing to eat a lot of pasta to prove my point. Really, for science. Seriously. Damn, now I'm hungry.