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Monday, May 16, 2011

The best lasagna I've ever had...

A combination of gooey cheese, bright tomato sauce, and delicious noodles makes for the best lasagna I've ever eaten.  And believe it or not, I made it myself.  Anyone can throw a can of sauce together with a cheese mixture, but what makes a really special Italian dish is making your own sauce.  And it isn't nearly as difficult or time consuming as you think.  Give this one a try sometime!!!

Katie's Lasagna


2 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup finely diced onion
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1 lb. Italian Hot Sausage, ground
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (14.5 ounce) can fire roasted tomatoes (I prefer Muir Glen brand)
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1/2 cup white wine
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

In a large skillet over medium heat saute the finely chopped onion in olive oil for 2 minutes. Add garlic and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Add sausage and break up with a wooden spoon until browned.  Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano, salt, pepper, and wine.  Simmer until thick, 15-20 minutes.  Stir in parsley and basil.  Let cool 30 minutes before combining with lasagna.

Cheese Mixture:
2 eggs
1 (2 lb) container whole milk ricotta cheese plus one cup (I'll give you a recipe to use up the remainder later)
2 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese, grated
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Salt & Pepper to taste

Whisk eggs in medium bowl.  Stir in ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan, S&P and nutmeg.  

Assemble lasagna in a 13" X 9" baking pan.  Spoon 1.5 cups of sauce into bottom of the pan.  Layer no boil lasagna noodles on sauce.  Spread 1/2 of cheese mixture on top of noodles.  Spoon 1/5 cups of sauce over the cheese mixture.  Top with shredded mozzarella cheese.  Arrange noodles over top.  Spoon remaining cheese mixture over noodles.  Pour remaining sauce over cheese.  Top with mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.  Cover with foil and bake at 375 degrees 50-60 minutes or until bubbly.  Remove foil and bake 5 more minutes, or until cheese is melted.  Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

To use the remaining ricotta:  (My take of Olive Garden's Sofatelli) Combine with 1 cup mozzarella, and 1 teaspoon of your choice of thyme, basil, oregano, or parsley.  Salt and pepper the cheese mixture generously and spoon onto puff pastry squares (thaw puff pastry according to package directions, roll into 10 inch square, cut into fourths).  Brush with egg wash (1 egg combined with 1 tablespoon water, whisked together).  Bake at 375 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until pastry is golden brown.  Serve with pasta, steaks, or chicken.   

1 comment:

  1. I have made this recipe three times now. The sauce is absolutely amazing. My Italian boyfriend asks for it all the time :) The only thing I have changed is that I added some Siracha Hot Sauce (we like things spicy!) Thank You for the incredible recipe!