Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Secret Weapon Lasagna

My dear friend told me a long time ago that she was perfectly fine making/baking things from a box or package to save time and energy, because that time or energy was better spent on quality time with your kids and family (shoutout to Amy Dale - that was you). Well, I wholeheartedly agree with that. There are a few special things I will always make from scratch (pie crust and gravy to name two) but when it comes to most things, I take the easy way. That's where the title of this post comes in.

I've spent a while (about 4 1/2 years actually) trying to come up with the perfect lasagna recipe to fit our my taste, skill level, and prep/cook time preferences. The first recipe I made a couple of times was from an old friend of my family (her family's cookbook, actually), which is the origin for many of my favorite staple recipes. It was good, but way, way too hard. I appreciate it, but I'm also ok admitting that they are just way better cooks than I am and I don't need to try to live up:) The 2nd recipe I tried was one I found online on a generic cooking website (pre-Pinterest). It was ok, but still, too many steps. The 3rd recipe was my Aunt's recipe (shoutout to Aunt Cindy - who makes awesome vegetarian AND meat lasagna) and it was good and easy, but makes waaay too much for us, and I'm too lazy to put it in two containers and freeze on (if we're being honest). However, she did introduce me to the oven-ready lasagna noodles and I will never go back to the other kind!

That brings us to this recipe - I'll share it before I share the origin :)

1 package of oven-ready lasagna
1 lb (approx) ground beef
1/2 lb ground sausage
1 26oz jar of spaghetti sauce
1 8oz can tomato sauce
1/2 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. oregano
1 3/4 C or 15oz fat free ricotta cheese
1 egg, beaten
2-3 C shredded mozzarella cheese
handful of shredded Parmesan cheese 

In a large skillet, brown meat then drain. Return to skillet and add spaghetti and tomato sauce. In medium bowl,  add egg, ricotta, basil, & oregano.

1.In a 9x13" baking dish, spread about 3/4C meat sauce evenly over dish.
2.Add 3 of the noodles side-by-side but not touching (they expand).
3.Spread 1/3 ricotta mixture on noodles.
4.Spread 3/4C meat sauce over that, then sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.

Repeat steps 2,3,&4 two times. Add remaining noodles, remaining meat sauce, and sprinkle with remaining mozz. cheese and the Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil, bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove foil, bake an additional 10-15 minutes.

That is a lot of words but it is the simplest recipe for lasagna I've ever made. And guess where I found it? On the box of oven-ready noodles - American Beauty brand. I tweaked it a little - and you can adjust the assembly to your preference, but that is the origin.

Lasagna is one of Tyler's favorite meals so I try to make it pretty often. It looks like someone is following in his dad's footsteps... sorry for the blurry pictures. It's pretty evident I don't have a clue how to work my camera.

Mmm...want a kiss?

1 comment:

  1. I will be looking for these Lasagna noodles! Thanks for the perfect recipe! We hope you'll be back to our "Strut Your Stuff Saturday". We loved having you! -The Sisters


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