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Roulade with Mixed Greens, Ricotta and Fresh Tomato Sauce

8 servings

This dish is really just a variation on an omelet: a filling wrapped in a sheet of egg. The filling in this case was made of a mixture of leafy greens – spinach, watercress, basil, parsley and scallion greens – mixed with onions and layered with ricotta. The egg wrapper is a sheet soufflé that's cooled and therefore de-puffed. With a simple fresh tomato sauce, a green salad, a crusty baguette and a bottle of crisp pinot grigio this dish makes a very pleasant weeknight supper or casual weekend lunch. 


For the souffle: 

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/3 cup Parmeggiano Regianno, finely grated

For the filling: 

  • 20 ounces mixed leafy greens (spinach, scallion greens, watercress, fresh basil, parsley or other leafy greens, in any combination)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • White parts of the scallions, if used, minced
  • 3 medium shallots, chopped
  • 6 ounces whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • Nutmeg to taste
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

For the tomato sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 medium shallots, peeled, thinly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 4 fresh plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded and cut in 1" dice
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 sprigs parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Make the souffle: 

Preheat the oven to 400º.

1. Line a 9 x 12 baking dish with buttered and floured parchment paper.

2. Separate the eggs. Beat the yolks with a fork. 

3. Make a roux by melting the butter in a small sauté pan and scattering in the flour. Cook on medium heat, stirring, for several minutes until the mixture starts to darken slightly. 

4. Stir in the milk and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir again. Mixture should be thick. 

5. Whisk 1/3 of the beaten yolks into the roux mixture, then add the rest of the yolks and whisk for a minute or so to combine thoroughly. 

6. Add a pinch of salt to the egg whites and beat until they make firm peaks. 

7. Stir one-fourth of the egg whites and one-half of the cheese into the roux/yolks mixture, then gently fold in the rest of the beaten egg whites. 

8. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish, spreading it into the corners with a spatula. Scatter on the rest of the cheese. 

9. Bake in the preheated 400º oven about 15 minutes, until the souffle has puffed up and is beginning to brown. 

Set aside to cool while you make the filling. 

Make the filling:

1. Wash the greens. Place the olive oil in a large skillet or sauté pan over high heat. Add the wet greens to the skillet and toss with tongs until wilted, about a minute or two. Remove to a colander. 

2. Press as much moisture from the greens as possible with the back of a large spoon and leave in the colander to dry. 

3. Place the butter in the skillet and melt over medium heat. Add the shallots and scallions, if used, and cook slowly, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 8 minutes, until the onions are translucent but not yet beginning to color. Remove from heat.

4. Chop the cooked greens and mix with the cooked onions and butter. 

5. Mix the ricotta with the milk and nutmeg and stir 'til smooth.  Season to taste with salt and pepper. 

To assemble: 

Turn the cooled soufflé onto a board. Spread the ricotta mixture evenly over the soufflé, then the greens/onion mixture. Starting with the short side of the soufflé, roll into a roulade. 

If making ahead, wrap tightly in plastic and refrigerate. 

Make sauce:

1. Place the olive oil in a medium sauté pan over medium high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, for 5 to 8 minutes or so, until the onions are soft. 

2. Add the tomatoes, bay leaf, parsley, thyme and basil. Cook 10 to 12 minutes or so, unitl the tomatoes have broken down and the sauce is fairly thick. 

3. Remove the bay leaf, garlic and parsley stems. Correct the seasoning. If the sauce is too thick add a little water.

To finish and serve: 

Preheat the oven to 400º.

Bake the roulade, loosely covered with foil, about 25 minutes. Meanwhile, keep the sauce warm. To serve, slice the roulade, place on a serving plate and spoon on the sauce. 


Nutritional Estimate: 8 Servings. Per serving: 256 Calories; 11 g Total Carbs; 2 g Dietary Fiber; 4 g Sugars; 18 g Fat; 119 mg Cholesterol; 181 mg Sodium; 11 g Protein. Weight Watchers: 6 points.


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