Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Homemade Lasagna

Ah...lasagna. How I love lasagna, and I'm not talking about the stuff bought in the frozen section of the grocery store. When I was growing up, lasagna was only made for special occasions. I guess because it takes it little bit extra time and ingredients to prepare. I love the lasagna I grew up having, although I have made a couple of changes as I've started preparing it myself. This was actually the first thing I ever made for my husband. I had only known him for two weeks! It is so yummy and it's really not that hard to prepare. You just need make sure you allow time to bake it, because it does take almost an hour to bake. This dish also freezes great. Just cover tightly with foil and freeze. When ready to prepare it, thaw it in the fridge and bake as directed. Enjoy!

Homemade Lasagna
1 1/2 pounds ground turkey or beef
1/2 tsp dried basil
3/4 tsp oregano
3/4 tsp parsley
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp dried rosemary
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tsp sugar
1 TBSP onion, diced (could use minced onion)
1 TBSP cornstarch
1/2 tsp minced garlic
2 (8 ounce) cans tomato sauce (or crushed tomatoes)
1/4 cup water

16 ounces Ricotta Cheese
1 egg, beaten
4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
6 whole wheat lasagna noodles, cooked

Brown meat, drain excess fat and return to pan. In a small bowl, mix first 14 ingredients together. Add tomato sauce and water to pan with meat, and then dry ingredients. Stir until combined well. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes. (This is my basic recipe for homemade spaghetti.)

Cook noodles as directed on box and cool.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Mix ricotta cheese and egg in small bowl.

Layer half of the meat mixture on the bottom of 9x13 casserole dish. Layer 3 lasagna noodles on top. Spread half of ricotta cheese mixture on top of the noodles and then sprinkle 2 cups of the mozzarella cheese on top of that. Repeat those layers one more time; meat, noodles, ricotta cheese, mozzarella. Finish with Parmesan cheese sprinkled on top.

Cover with aluminum foil and bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake an additional 30 minutes without foil, until cheese starts to brown slightly and is bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
Serve with a salad and some hot bread. Delicious! And be prepared for leftovers, this makes a ton! You can make two small lasagnas if you choose, but this lasagna leftover is soooo good!

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