"It's the company, not the cooking, that makes the meal!" ~Perilee 
(Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Larson)

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Our Homemade Lasagna

I got this recipe from my friend Lisa F. in Lake George, NY. She is allergic to eggs so this lasagna is made without them (lower-fat content a plus). We have made our own modifications to the recipe as well so here it is:

1 lb pound lean ground beef
1 onion, chopped
2 gloves of garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried basil, or 1 Tablespoon Fresh Basil, chopped when you have it
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes or stewed. (If you use the stewed chop up the tomatoes a little)
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
12 dry lasagna noodles
Cheese Filling:
1 pint part-skim ricotta cheese (cottage cheese small curd works too)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tablespoons dried parsley
1 teaspoon salt
1 lb Mozzarella cheese, shredded (I don't know if I have ever used the full lb. Maybe more like 3 cups)
2 Tablespoons grated Parmesan Cheese

In a skillet brown ground beef, onion and garlic; drain off fat. Mix in basil, oregano, brown sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, diced tomatoes, and tomato paste. Simmer for 30 to 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add lasagna noodles, and cook for 5 to 8 minutes or until al dente (best to follow package instructions here); drain. Lay noodles flat on towels, and blot dry.

In a medium bowl, mix together ricotta, Parmesan cheese, and parsley and 1 teaspoon salt.
(* Sometimes I just through the mozzarella cheese in with this mixture. It takes out one step of layering in the assembly process. **IF you want to ADD EGGS add 2 eggs, beaten to this mixture-we never have and it is wonderful lasagna)
Layer 1/3 of the lasagna noodles in the bottom of a prepared 9 x 13 baking dish. Cover noodles with 1/2 ricotta mixture, 1/2 the mozzarella cheese, and 1/3 of the sauce. Repeat. Top with remaining noodles and sauce. Sprinkle with Parmesan Cheese.

Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

* This recipe easily feeds 4 Adults and 3 children at least twice. I can't say that I have ever frozen it because I usually make it when I have a crowd. I don't see why you couldn't put it in 2- 8x8 dishes and freeze one for later.

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