Recipe yield--one pan of lasagna
The finished lasagna
Janel had the idea of taking pictures as I cooked this one, and so I tried to snap some pictures of the different ingredients I used (and I threw in quite a few, big surprise).
I'm going to put together an ingredients list, but I am going list the ingredients with the pictures. Each picture essentially represents a separate phase or portion of the recipe. There is definitely room for some experimentation in this recipe. My version is fairly spicy, but please make it the way you like it :)
- preheat oven to 400 (this step comes especially early in my mustard yellow, 60s-style oven)
- 1/3 red bell pepper, chopped
- minced fresh garlic (about 4 or 5 cloves)
- chopped onion--i used about 1/2 an onion
- sliced mushrooms
- diced shallot (for stronger onion taste)
- spicy sausage--i used 1/2 tube
- thick sliced bacon--a few slices, diced
- meat tenderizer--recommended if using frozen meat
- oil for frying
Coat a frying pan with pam or whatever--only a masochist wants to clean up a sticky, charred sausage after cooking. Saute with oil--add more if onions do not cook quickly enough. Cover frying pan with a lid, but be sure to stir the mix every few minutes.
When the sausage is browned, bacon is cooked and onions are no longer raw, begin adding sauce ingredients.
|sauce and spice time!|
- can of tomato sauce
- dry oregano
- basil--put enough in! :)
- italian seasoning
- fennel seed (optional, but i have some so i threw it in)
- spicy pepper flakes
- cooking wine--i used red burgoundy, but white will also work (if you don't have any cooking wine, apple juice or a spoonful of sugar will work too)
- tomato, chopped
- green onions -- chopped
- spinach--optional healthy addition
Stir tomato sauce, oregano, basil, italian seasoning, fennel seed, pepper, and chopped tomato into the frying pan. Add wine to sweeten sauce, and to add moisture if sauce is too dry. Cover with lid and allow to simmer until thick. (If your in a rush mix cornstarch with cold water and then add to sauce--this will make it thicken much quicker). Add green onions last.
Add lasagna noodles to a pot of salted boiling water. Cook pasta until it is almost done (al dente), and then strain and rinse. Set aside.
While tomato/meat sauce is simmering, mix the following in a medium mixing bowl:
- milk, maybe 1/4 cup (any whippable cream will work)
- parmesan and ricotta cheese--at least 1 cup
- one egg
- parsley flakes
- dry oregano
- basil pesto
- cream cheese--the more, the richer
- sour cream--one scoop
- garlic powder--don't listen to what dad says, it'll be good :P
Mix ingredients together until there are no lumps of cream cheese.
CHEESE!!! Mix and match
- mozarella, shredded
- provolone, shredded
- colby or monteray jack, shredded
- white chipolte cheddar (not required, but I had some on hand so i used it)
Grease baking or casserole dish thoroughly. Add noodles, meat sauce, and white cheese sauce in layers. Additional cheese may be added to each layer if extra space is available. Top with shredded cheese--the more the better this will taste. I know cheese is pricy, but its worth it...trust me.
Cover and bake until lasagna is bubbly and cheese is well melted,
Try not to go back for seconds--I dare you!
I got a lot of ideas for this from two different recipes on allrecipes, feel free to experiment and make this dish exactly the way you want to. Be sure to scale recipes similar if you take ingredients from different ones. Here are the major sources for this recipe--