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Lasagna

Amanda's "Almost Famous" Lasagna

Amanda Haas
I call this recipe “almost famous” because my family requests this lasagna almost as much as my famous Skirt Steak with Chimichurri Sauce! I’m a huge fan of keeping recipes classic when they’re perfect as is, and lasagna is no exception. It’s all about the meat/red sauce/cheese ratio.  (We go heavy on the meat and cheese.) And the noodles? I love the no-boil version, whether they are made with flour or Gluten Free. (For gf, I like the Jovial brand.) If this becomes a hit in your house, you can always double the recipe and freeze one for a busy weeknight! 
Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Servings 8 people

Ingredients
  

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 lbs bulk Italian sausage
  • 2 25-oz. jars tomato-basil pasta sauce (or marinara)
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 cups shredded mozzarella, divided
  • 15 oz. whole milk ricotta, drained
  • 3/4 cup grated, Parmesan, divided
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • 1 package lasagna noodles (12 noodles)

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. 
  • In a large saute or sauce pan, warm the oil over medium heat.  Add the sausage and spread it around the bottom of the, allowing it to brown before turning with a spoon.  If it’s easier, break up the sausage with a potato masher while it is in the pan to form bit-sized pieces.  Continue to cook and stir until it is just cooked through, about 5-8 minutes.
  • Add all of the tomato sauce except a few tablespoons.  (The reserved sauce will coat the bottom of the lasagna pan.) Stir to combine the sausage with the tomato sauce, then simmer for 10-15 minutes until the flavors meld.  Taste, adding salt if necessary.  (Many times the sausage has plenty of seasoning already.) 
  • While the sauce simmers, make the cheese filling.  In a medium mixing bowl, combine three cups of the mozzarella with the ricotta and 1/2 cup of the grated parmesan.  Stir to combine. Taste, adding a pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper if needed.
  • Add the egg to the mixture and stir to incorporate.    
  • Place the remaining cup of mozzarella and the remaining 1/4 cup of parmesan in a small bowl and toss to combine. Set aside. 
  • To build the lasagna, spread the reserved tablespoons of tomato sauce across the bottom of a 8 X 12 or 9 X 13 baking dish.   Place 4 of the lasagna noodles crosswise, allowing them to overlap a bit if necessary. (If the noodles you are using cover the length of the pan, place 3 of the noodles lengthwise to create the first layer.) 
  • Drop ½ of the ricotta cheese mixture in spoonfuls across the noodles.  Spread it out evenly with a spatula or even use your hands if  necessary to create a fairly even layer.  Pour 1/3 of the meat sauce over the cheese and spread with a spatula to cover.  
  • Repeat with another layer of noodles, the remaining ricotta mixture, and ⅓ of the meat sauce.
  • Add the final layer of noodles, then the remaining sauce, ensuring the noodles are totally covered with the sauce.  
  • Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella and parmesan over the entire lasagna.  
  • Cover the pan tightly with a piece of aluminum foil. Place it on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes.  Lift a corner of the foil and insert a knife in the lasagna. If it easily punctures the noodles, remove the foil and bake another 5 minutes until bubbly.  If not, cover it again and cook for another 5-10 minutes.
  • Allow the lasagna to cool for 10-15 minutes before slicing.  Serve immediately. 
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!