Friday, February 29, 2008

How Cheesy!

I've made lasagna several times, with different recipes. Although it usually turns out very good tasting, it often falls apart. I let it rest a bit longer, and voila - it stayed in one piece! I sort of combined two different recipes from Allrecipes, "Deep Dish Lasagna" and "World's Best Lasagna". I'm only posting the ingredients/directions that I used from those recipes, and I did make some changes/substitutions from the original versions, trying to make it a little bit healthier.

Deep Dish Cheesy Lasagna

12 uncooked whole wheat lasagna noodles
2/3 cups chopped onion
1 lb extra lean ground sirloin
3 cloves minced garlic
1 teaspoon white sugar
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1.5 tsp dried basil
2 tsp dried oregano
4/5 tbsp freshly chopped parsley, divided
2.5 tsp salt, divided
3/4 cup shredded parmesan
1/2 cup water
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
2 6.5 oz tomato sauce
1-2 6.5 oz cans tomato paste
16 oz part skim or fat free ricotta cheese
3 cups part skim shredded mozzarella cheese
1 egg

In a large pot or Dutch oven, cook ground beef, and add in onions and garlic till browned, drain. Return to pot, and stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, paste(you can just add one can and add more later to thicken), and water. Season with sugar, basil, oregano, Italian seasoning, 2 tsp salt, pepper & parsley. Simmer covered for about 1.5 hours, stirring occasionally.

Bring a pot of salted water to boil and cook lasagna noodles about 8-10 minutes, or I will cook about a minute less than according to directions. Drain & rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine 1/2 salt, egg, ricotta & 1/2 tbsp of parsley.

In a greased 9 x 13 baking dish, spread 1.5 cups of sauce, and layer 4 noodles and spread half of the ricotta mixture, 1 - 1.5 cups of sauce, 1 cup mozzarella. Repeat this layer again, and the last layer will be noodles, sauce & mozzarella cheese.

Bake covered in preheated oven for 25 minutes, remove foil, and bake 20-25 more minutes. Let lasagna cool 10 minutes before serving.

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