This was a special request from Lucas. I used to make lasagna somewhat often, but for some reason it dropped out of our regular rotation. I am pleased to be bringing it back with this recipe, though! The original recipe makes a 9x13 monster lasagna, but I divided it into 2 8x8 pans--cooked one, and froze the other. Bam! One less dinner to cook next week.
The recipe calls for making your own tomato sauce--but feel free to substitute your favorite jarred variety if you don't have the extra time. I made my own this time, since we are going for a less processed lasagna for our monthly challenge, and it was actually really easy. And tasty, too. And really, really filling. Technically, this will end up feeding us for 4 nights, since we'll have leftovers from each batch. Always a bonus for me!
adapted from Cooking Light at Myrecipes.com
1 lb. ground meat (beef, pork, chicken, or sausage...we used beef, because that's what we had).
1 cup chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup fresh parsley, divided
1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
1 (14.5 oz.) can Italian stewed tomatoes
1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce
1 (6 oz. ) can tomato paste
2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried basil
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 cups cottage cheese
1 (15 oz.) container part skim ricotta cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten
12 whole wheat lasagna noodles, cooked according to package directions (or make your own...)
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1. Brown meat over medium heat; crumble, drain, and set aside.
2. Heat olive oil in a skillet and brown the onion and garlic over medium heat until onion is translucent. Return meat to pan, and 2 Tbsp. fresh parsley, and the following ingredients: crushed tomatoes, stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, oregano, basil, and pepper. Cover, and reduce heat. Simmer 15 minutes. Uncover, simmer an additional 20 minutes.
3. In a bowl, combine remaining 2 Tbsp. parsley, cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, egg, and parmesan cheese. Stir to combine.
4. In a 9x13 pan (or 2 8x8 pans) coated in cooking spray, spread a layer of sauce on the bottom of the pan. Arrange a layer of noodles over sauce. Top with a layer of the cheese mixture. Sprinkle a layer of mozzarella cheese on top of the ricotta mixture. Top with another layer of tomato sauce, then another layer of noodles, ricotta cheese, and mozzarella cheese. Top with a final noodle layer and cover the top with remaining tomato sauce.
5. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees F. for 60 minutes. Remove from over, uncover, and sprinkle a layer of mozzarella on top. Return to the oven for 5-10 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly. Remove and let stand 10 minutes before serving.