Nidi di Rondine
Swallows Nests, Nidi di Rondine, are a pasta roll up with a wonderful filling. Bechamel sauce, Emmenthal cheese, and prosciutto are rolled up in lasagna noodles. Place them in a pan and top with marinara sauce and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese then bake.
Each bite has a variety of textures, soft, crispy, oozy, and chewy. I especially like the crispy baked edges of the pasta.
This recipe has a bit of busy work to it, but the reward is a delicious and very rich and visually stunning dish.
1 Package lasagna pasta noodles
1 cup bechamel sauce, directions below
3/4 lb. prosciutto or ham, sliced thin
1 1/3 cup Fontina or Emmenthal cheese, thin slices
1 1/2 cups marinara sauce
Parmigiano Reggiano to sprinkle on top
To make the Bechamel:
2 tablespoons (Wondra) flour,
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated
Whisk milk and flour in a saucepan together, add butter and place pan over moderate high heat.
Keep whisking until sauce thickens. Season with salt and the 2 tablespoons of grated
To pre-cook the pasta:
Cook just 3 lasagna pieces at a time in salted boiling water. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on kitchen towels. Turn them over to dry on both sides.
Pre-heat the oven to 375° F.
To fill and assemble the Rosettes:
Coat the bottom of a large baking dish with 1 cup of the marinara sauce.
Spread a thin layer of béchamel on the pasta pieces, then sprinkle with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and place slices of prosciutto or ham and cheese on top.
Roll up each in piece into a cylinder. Place them close together cut side up in baking dish.
Continue the process until the dish is full – if you have space left use crumpled balls of foil to fill in the space and keep the rolls upright.
Use kitchen scissors to nick the rolls in a few places and pull out pasta “petals” turning them down a little so they stay open during baking. See picture above.
Dot the top of the pasta roses with the remaining marinara sauce and sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Bake for 30 minutes or until the top of the “roses” are crisp and golden.
Original recipe found here: