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Dec 15, 2006 06:10 AM

Fresh Pasta in Lasagna?

After reading a zillion glowing reviews of the use of fresh pasta in lasagna, I gave it a go. The result was really delicious when fresh out of the oven, but once I put it in the fridge...soggy city! Lasagna is one of my go-to weeklong dishes, and whenever I use dry pasta, the leftovers are as good (if not better!) than the original. But each subsequent eating of the fresh-pasta-lasagna was less and less appealing.

As every review I read (and the pasta vendor) instructed, I did not boil the pasta before baking. I just layered it as-is, and baked as usual. Did I do something wrong? Was there maybe something wrong with the pasta? Or is fresh pasta just no good when it comes to leftovers?

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  1. I've never had that problem. But then again I can't stand the thickness and especially the ruffles on the dry/boiled pasta, it's too stiff and thick for me.

    I make mine with semolina which apparently not a lot of people do, and I roll it out more thick than if I'm making linguine or whatever. Or did you buy it already made, that's usually much thicker than I do. It could just be a matter of taste, or what you're used to, though.

    1. I use a combo of 1/3 semolina and 2/3 reg flour, thanks to some great thread on this topic a couple of months ago. I found the dried stuff from the box was well, just like the box. The home grown takes the same time as boiling water , cooking noodles, placing cooked noodles on waxed paper. Tes its a little more messy (flour around) but its a great trade-off.

      1 Reply
      1. re: jfood

        So you don't do the whole rinse and squeeze thingy? Boil, shock (yes?). Laying on waxed paper sounds like a good idea since it wouldn't stick. And I believe you freeze lasagne, don't you? On a related topic, can I make the bechamel hours ahead of time?

      2. Fresh pasta is not designed for leftovers. Its texture suffers. Dried pasta is more durable in a number of respects.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Karl S

          I agree with you, Karl. In my experience, it kind of defeats the purpose of going to the work of making fresh pasta if you are not going to serve it the same day. While my leftovers with fresh pasta still taste good the next day, the original dish when freshly prepared, is *the* reason to go to the trouble of making homemade pasta.

          As for the original poster's dish, it sounds like you may have made your recipe without adjusting for the fresh pasta. Dried noodles, especially when used in lasagne, will soak up a LOT more liquid than either cooked pasta or fresh pasta. Perhaps you just had too much liquid in the dish for the fresh pasta to hold up over time. Given that it tasted delicious when it came out of the oven, I would think this was more the problem than the fresh noodles themselves.

        2. I find the dry, "no-boil" sheets are an excellent compromise. Very easy, of course. Much thinner and more suitable than those thick, ruffled things -- I've been able to get results that are similar to what I've had in Italy. And the leftovers are quite nice. The key is including the right amount of liquid for them to absorb while cooking -- more than you might think.

          1. I too use part semolina and I do boil mine before using. Usually leftovers are not a problem because there aren't any but if there are they are eaten thre next day with little deteriation. But it usually is not around for more than24 hours.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Candy

              so if i boil mine before baking it, will that make it 'sturdier' in the fridge?

              i LOVED the taste and texture of it when i first baked it, and if there's a way to preserve that, i'd love to know. i bake a whole pan for just the two of us, and we usually eat it on and off for about a just 24 hours of holding up won't really do the trick for us.

              1. re: Candy

                I boil mine too and haven't had any problems. Usually, too, there aren't any leftovers, but we haven't had a sogginess problem. Maybe yours were a bit too thin?

                My biggest problem w/the fresh pasta is that it disappears if I turn around for even a sec. :b