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  • Lasagna

    I love a good lasagna and make it about twice a year. I'd make it more often, but it takes a considerable amount of time, effort and shopping as there are a lot of components to it. Like many people, I don't always have the luxury of that time.

    The first thing I do is to get all of my ingredients together as it aids is making sure I don't miss anything.The last thing I want is to discover that I'm short on something and this method allows me to run out and get whatever I may have missed. I'm only 10 minutes from and and all stores I need for this.

    Everything I need is here:
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    I start with preparing a basic meat sauce of minced beef and pork, although I also add Veal if I can find it fresh. My sauce always includes garlic, onions and mushrooms. For seasonings I use an Italian Herb blend, add additional Basil, salt,pepper, red pepper flakes and Bay leaves. I then bring it to a boil for about 5 minutes and reduce for a good 2-3 hour simmer.

    In the meantime I prepare a mixture of chopped spinach (thawed and pressed to remove most of the liquid), a container of Ricotta cheese, a good amount of both shredded Mozzarella and Parmesan, salt & pepper and an egg to bind it. I refrigerate this until such as time as I'm ready to assemble the Lasagna. Here is the assembled spinach/cheese concoction:

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    Once I'm satisfied that my sauce is up to snuff (I do frequent tastings) I boil my Lasagna noodles, shred any remaining cheese(s) and give a light coating of cooking spray to my Lasagna pan. By this point I'm also ready for another glass of wine.

    Assembly is easy. Lay down some noodles, add sauce to cover, another layer of noodles, then a layer of the spinach/cheese (all of it), another layer of noodles, second layer of sauce and a final layer of noodles. I top this with more sauce and all of the remaining cheese gratings. Here is the assembled product:

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    Since everything is already cooked I pre-heat the oven to 350°F, cover the lasagna with aluminum foil and let it get nice and delicious for about 45 minutes. After this I remove the foil and raise the heat to 400°F to brown the cheese topping somewhat and give it colour. I'm very careful at this point and watch it closely as I don't want the cheese to burn. Here is the finished product:

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    For some of you this may not be enough cheese, so feel free to add much more. It's entirely up to you. Same thing goes for spices. Use what you like in the quantity you like. Ditto for your sauce. The above is only a representation of how I like my Lasagna.

    Here are two gratuitous shots of how it looks once cut into it:

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    Thanks for letting me share one of my favourite dishes.
    Dynavector DV20x2L MC cartridge - Genesis G7.1f speakers - Marantz Reference PM-KI-Pearl Int. Amp. - Oracle Audio Paris MkV turntable - Various Morrow & Valab/King cables

  • #2
    looks great do you ever make it with a layer of bechamel? my mom always did, she is like 1/4 Italian
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    • #3
      John what a very tasty looking lasagne you have made. I really like your choice of ingredients, making my mouth water.
      Marty

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      • Johnny Vinyl
        Johnny Vinyl commented
        Editing a comment
        Thanks Marty! It's a fairly basic recipe, but I (we) enjoy it.

    • #4
      Originally posted by Rob View Post
      looks great do you ever make it with a layer of bechamel? my mom always did, she is like 1/4 Italian
      I have yes! My ex and I actually made it fairly often, but I've gravitated away from it over the years. You've peaked a memory though....hmmmm. Thanks!
      Dynavector DV20x2L MC cartridge - Genesis G7.1f speakers - Marantz Reference PM-KI-Pearl Int. Amp. - Oracle Audio Paris MkV turntable - Various Morrow & Valab/King cables

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      • #5
        Thanks John, mmmm ....that looks delicious! You nailed the reason I don't make it though. I made a meat lasagna one time for a departmental party years ago and couldn't believe how long it took to make!
        Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
        Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
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        • Johnny Vinyl
          Johnny Vinyl commented
          Editing a comment
          That's why I only do it a few times a year. I'm due to make another.....getting some pressure from family to get busy! LOL!

        • Beaur
          Beaur commented
          Editing a comment
          Tips for a quicker lasagna;

          If you have a big enough pot make enough sauce for 2 or 3 pans then freeze what you don't use in the correct size portions.
          Use no boil noodles. I don't notice much if any difference, unless you are making from scratch! Need a juicy sauce to use no boil though.
          Use a kitchen towel to press spinach. Form ball in middle and twist.

          Otherwise this looks good. Will be making one soon now!!

      • #6
        A wonderful alternative to this Lasagna is Manicotti. It won't save you a lot of time as you have to fill each Manicotti tube, which will require a little practice.

        You'll need double of the Spinach/Cheese mixture as only that will be used for the tube stuffing, but you'll only need half of the sauce....although you can easily freeze the remainder.

        Some sauce at the bottom - lay down the stuffed Manicotti tubes - more sauce and then the cheese. Voila! Done!
        Dynavector DV20x2L MC cartridge - Genesis G7.1f speakers - Marantz Reference PM-KI-Pearl Int. Amp. - Oracle Audio Paris MkV turntable - Various Morrow & Valab/King cables

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