Sunday, September 7, 2008

Inlaw Visit = Lasagna!

Inevitably, if we have out of town guests, I will make and freeze a lasagna at least a week ahead of time. I'll pull it out and put it in the fridge 24 hours in advance to thaw and then leave it out for an hour on the counter before I cook it off for dinner.

I've been "test driving" lasagna recipes for years, but none of them seemed to hit the "just right" button in my mouth. So, recently, I combined 2 great recipes to make what I think is a knock out 5 layer combination. I hope you try it and think so too!

I will also typically buy the short and deep tin lasagna pan from the grocery store for ease of clean up. So, take that into account as far as amount of ingredients, height of layers etc.

So, for the sauce, I was inspired by Ina's Turkey Lasagna. For the cheese mixture, I was inspired by Rachel's Special Occasion Lasagna. I ended up adding a ton more mozzarella and parmesan along the way, so here we go!

PS-- This recipe has now officially set the landspeed record in our house for fastest disappearing lasagna ever! We only had 2 pieces leftover after the first round and they were consumed asap the following day. I think this recipe might be a keeper! ;)

5 Layer Lasagna for Company

1 large lasagna pan
1 lb box lasagna noodles (will need 15 noodles total)
1 lb bag of part skim mozzarella

3/4 cup small curd low fat cottage cheese, drained
3/4 cup (6 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup (6 ounces) part-skim ricotta cheese
1 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese, divided
2 tablespoons minced fresh chives
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 large egg whites, lightly beaten
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 c. fresh chopped parsley

2 tbsp olive oil
1 c chopped yellow onion (1 onion)
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 - 1 1/2 lb sweet Italian turkey sausage, casings removed
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes (roma/plum)
3 tbsp concentrated tomato paste
1/4 c chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 c chopped fresh basil leaves
1 tspn kosher salt
3/4 tspn freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions, only 1 or 2 minutes less than directed.

Mix up items for cheese mixture (using only a 1/4 c. parm) and set aside.

Heat oil in large pan or dutch oven, add onion and garlic. Cook/sweat for approx. 5 minutes or until onion is translucent. Add turkey sausage and cook until no longer pink. Add tomatos, tomato paste, basil, parsley, salt and pepper. Simmer for 15-20 minutes until thickened.

To assemble Lasagna:

Layer a ladle of sauce on the bottom of your lasagna pan. Lay three noodles, lengthwise across pan. Add two ladels of sauce on top of noodles. Add a ladle and a half of cheese mixture and then a handful+ of mozzarella. Repeat. Be sparing w/sauce and cheeses and you will want to have 5 layers when you are done. For the top and final layer, merely ladle the sauce that is left across the noodles and top with mozzarella cheese and remaining 3/4 c. of parmesan.

Bake at 400 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until browned at the edges and bubbly. Enjoy!


madebymel said...

Mmmm I love cheesy, deep dish lasagna. Looks delicious!

Beverly aka beestamper said... are making my mouth water. Your lasagna looks fabulous, I love that is is firm and not runny. Will definitely give this a try and hope it turns as as well as your's.

That Girl said...

I love that your lasagna looks like mine - messy, cheesy, and never model perfect.

Sophie said...

We would like to feature your 5 layer lasagna on our blog. Please email if interested. Thanks :)

You can view our blog here: