White Chicken Spinach Lasagna

White Chicken Spinach Lasagna | windykitchen

Guys, it’s been two days, and I still haven’t really gotten over the How I Met Your Mother finale. I need to talk about it, OK? So if you don’t want to know about it (or if you could 100% care less), here’s your last warning to bail.

….

….

Everybody else gone? OK good.

HOW TERRIBLE WAS THAT?!? That terrible, terrible theory we talked about a few weeks ago, the one where the mother’s been dead the whole time? Well, it turned out to be true. And not only that (I had almost made my peace with that), he somehow ended up with Robin in the end. Which just felt like a betrayal to everyone who watched the show for 9 years. You know? HIMYM took this cool risk (saying from Day 1 that Robin wasn’t the mother), and I appreciated and respected that…and then at the last minute, they manage to keep their promise on some sort of unsatisfying technicality. Not cool.

Also not cool — that finale spanned 25 years and yet we never got to see a single scene of Ted mourning the death of his wife. Doesn’t that seem a little heartless?

Alternate theory: maybe I’m not actually sad about the finale; maybe I’m sad that HIMYM being over makes me feel old. The show premiered when I was still in college, and I’ve been watching it ever since my first year of law school. In fact, the friend who introduced me to the show came over to watch the finale, and when it was over, she declared our 20s officially over. I guess they kind of are!

Anyway, thanks for your patience with my HIMYM anxiety. I’m sure I’ll get over it eventually. In the meantime, here’s hoping that the love of your life doesn’t tragically die of a ill-defined sickness ten years from now!

WHITE CHICKEN SPINACH LASAGNA (slightly adapted from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe)

4 tbsp butter
1/2 cup chopped white or yellow onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 tbsp flour
1 and 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 cups milk
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper (I also added some garlic and onion powder)
9 lasagna noodles
2 cups part-skim ricotta cheese
2 chicken breasts, poached and shredded
4 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 1 lb)
1 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
2 boxes frozen spinach, thawed and drained, with water squeezed out

1. Preheat oven to 350. Lightly coat a 9X13 pan with nonstick cooking spray.
2. Cook lasagna noodles in large pot of salted water according to package instructions.
3. Meanwhile, in large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring often, until onion is translucent and tender, 3-4 minutes. Stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly, about 1-2 minutes.
4. Gradually add chicken broth and milk while stirring constantly. Continue cooking and stirring 4-5 minutes, or until mixture simmers and thickens. Stir in basil, oregano, salt, and pepper (I added some garlic and onion powder here, too).
5. To assemble, spread enough sauce on bottom of the prepared pan to coat. Place 3 noodles on top and dollop with half of the ricotta (try to spread it out a little, but no need to be perfect). Add half the chicken on top of the ricotta.
6. Layer half the spinach on top of the chicken, then sprinkle one-third of the mozzarella and one-third of the Parmesan.
7. Place next 3 noodles over top of cheese, gently pressing down to compress layers below. Spread half the remaining sauce over the top, then repeat layers again (remaining ricotta, remaining chicken, remaining spinach, 1/3 the mozzarella, 1/3 the Parmesan).
7. Place last 3 noodles over top, pressing down again. Spread remaining sauce over top, then sprinkle remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
8. Cover baking dish with lightly greased aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake another 15 minutes, until golden and bubbly. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

Unlike the HIMYM finale, this didn’t suck at all. In fact, it was creamy and dreamy and yummy. Not super light or healthy (or quick, sadly), but such a delicious treat.

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