Thursday, August 15, 2013

Lovin' Lasagna

Lasagna is a major staple in my recipe rotation. Everyone, including our cat Weasley, loves lasagna night.  It's been know to bring M.I.A. children back from friends houses and the last piece usually has a fight over it.

This recipe is labour of love but it is worth it.  It's great as a make ahead meal for during the week or a special Sunday night dinner.  Don't be afraid & give it a try.

Lets get started, shall we.....

Lovin' Lasagna



Ingredients:


12 Lasagna Noodles (3 noodles across the bottom & 4 layers tall)
2 cups Marble cheese (or 1 cup each Cheddar & mozzarella)
1 jar Pasta sauce
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 lbs Extra Lean Ground Beef
1 pint (15 -20) White Button Mushrooms, quartered 
1/2 tbsp Garlic Salt
2 Green Onions, chopped
1/2 tbsp Onion Salt
1 500 g tub Ricotta
1 tbsp Dried Parsley
1/4 cup Feta
1 Tomato, diced 
1 package frozen chopped spinach, defrosted 
(or 1 large bag of fresh, cooked, drained, & chopped)
1/2 tbsp each Salt & Pepper

* you can adjust the number of noodles to fit your pan. I use a 9 x 13 and everything fits perfectly.

Directions:

1. Preheat your oven to 350*.  
2.  Start heating a large pot of salted water for your noodles.
3.  In a large skillet add the garlic salt, onion salt, parsley, salt & pepper, and mushrooms to the ground beef and brown until thoroughly cooked.
4. Your pasta water should be boiling at this point.  Cook your lasagna noodles as per package instructions.
5.  In a medium sized bowl combine the ricotta and spinach, set aside.












6.  Once your pasta is done, drain most of the hot water and then add cold water.  This will stop the cooking process while keeping the noodles from sticking together.  Just remember not to leave them in the water too long.

7.  In your favourite lasagna dish, add a generous amount pasta sauce to the bottom and spread around.














8. Add a layer of noodles and pasta sauce.











9.  Divide the ground beef into two halves, and add the first half on top of the noodles.











10.  Add to the ground beef half of the tomatoes and green onions and lightly sprinkle with about 1/4 cup of the shredded marble cheese.











11.  Add another pasta & sauce layer but only add light amount of sauce.











12.  Carefully spoon the ricotta/spinach mixture onto the pasta and spread evenly.











13.  Repeat steps 8 - 10 for the third layer.



14.  Cover the ground beef with the last layer of pasta BUT before finishing off that bottle of pasta sauce lightly press down on the entire top to compress things a bit.  Then finish up that sauce and  the remaining marble cheese on the very top.  Sometimes I need to grate a little more just to have a nice thick layer with even coverage.  Then add the Feta and Parmesan.  For some color I add additional parsley to the top.












15.  Bake for 45 minutes or until cheese is completely melted and just starts to brown.   If you made this ahead of time and had it in the fridge it could take up to 90 minutes to bake.












16.  Remove from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes.  In the mean time throw together a nice salad to have on the side.  We like a spring blend, spinach & arugula with strawberries or Caesar.











Stay sweet!
Tammy