Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Auntie Shelley's Lasagna

Auntie Shelley's Lasagna
From Every Kitchen Tells Its Stories - Recipes that Warm the Heart

Hands on time: 30 minutes
Baking time: 60 minutes

Serves 8 (ingredients are for 14”x7” oven-proof deep dish pan)

1 box lasagna noodles
2-3 cups tomato sauce ( I use my Lazybones Marinara Sauce) of course if you can find Piazza Tomasso's meat sauce in the frozen food section of your store...you're one lucky person!)
2 cups (450 grams/16 oz) ricotta or cottage cheese
350 grams/12 oz block of mozzarella cheese, coarsely grated
1 package mozzarella, slices
1-2cup pepperoni, sliced (optional)
1 package. spinach, cooked and drained & chopped (optional)
¼-½ cup parmesan cheese


Boil the pasta until al dente (about 8 minutes) in lots of salted water. Another option is to use ready to cook lasagna...just lay them in the pan and use a little more sauce.

2. Prepare lasagna in a 14”x8” ovenproof dish as follows:
Thin layer of sauce
Layer of noodles to cover the pan side by side. Cut noodles to fit the remaining spaces.
Layer of sauce – ¾ cup
Layer of pepperoni or spinach*
Layer of ricotta or cottage cheese
Layer of noodles
Layer of sauce
Layer of grated mozzarella
Layer of noodles
Layer of sauce

3. Bake, covered, for 40 minutes at 350° F/180°C or until bubbly.

4. Add sliced mozzarella cheese, cut in triangles and slightly overlapped. Sprinkle with parmesan and continue to bake uncovered until the cheese has melted (about 10 minutes or so).

Tips & Variations

I usually use either spinach or pepperoni, but sometimes I like both. If so, the first layer is pepperoni and the second layer is spinach.

Spread the ingredients evenly for each layer, right to the edge of the pan.

Let it rest for 15 minutes before serving to set. It makes it easier to cut and looks less soupy.

If you are going to make the Marinara sauce the same day, add about 45 minutes to the hands-on time.

You can assemble this dish a couple of days ahead and leave it in the fridge. Just have it stand at room temperature for at least an hour before baking.

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