Irene's Signature Lasagna

Nov 04, 2016


There’s nothing like a nice, warm comfort dish, especially when the temperature starts to drop. Even better, it’s nice to have a signature dish you can bring out when holiday get-togethers (and plenty of them) are right around the corner.

My signature dish is one I bring out year round — and it goes really far, too. Here’s the recipe for my signature lasagna, that, your family and friends will come to expect as mine do when they come over. This recipe is intended for a pan that’s 9” by 13” but I use a 2 qt deep glass casserole dish. Get ready to layer up for this delicious dish!

Here’s what you’ll need:

For the sauce:

  • one cup chopped onion
  • half of a green pepper, chopped
  • one clove of garlic, minced
  • two teaspoons of olive oil
  • one pound of ground beef
  • one can of tomatoes (28 ounces)
  • two cans of tomato paste (small)
  • one-and-a-quarter teaspoons of salt
  • one tablespoon of sugar
  • one teaspoon oregano
  • one teaspoon basil
  • half-teaspoon pepper
  • one-quarter-pound of mushrooms, sautéed in butter

Take a large sauce pan and sautée the onion, green peppers and garlic in the olive oil for about five minutes. Your home will start to smell amazing — and hopefully the scent will bring some helpers down in to the kitchen to lend a hand.

After five minutes, add the beef to the mix and stir often for another five to six minutes. Finally, stir in the tomatoes, tomato paste and seasonings — and stir occasionally. Let it simmer for about two hours so the flavours really absorb to really richen the sauce. Then, after the two hours, add the sautéed mushrooms.

For the layers:

  • half-pound of lasagna noodles, cooked
  • mozzarella cheese slices (If you’re using a block of cheese, then grate it)
  • 500-grams of cottage cheese
  • half-cup grated parmesan cheese

There are about thirteen layers of cheesy, meaty, tomatoey goodness. So for starters, take your 2 qt deep glass casserole dish and grease it, while heating your oven to 350-degrees-Fahrenheit.

Start by pouring a layer of sauce on the bottom of the pan, followed by a layer of noodles. Each noodle layer should use only three lasagna noodles. Then, add another layer of sauce. Cover the sauce with mozzarella cheese and spread evenly. Next, put some cottage cheese spread evenly across the layer, and then layer that with the grated parmesan cheese. Then, go back to the first layer of sauce and repeat from the beginning, until your toppings are used up. Ensure that the last layer is a layer of sauce — it cooks and tastes much nicer that way.

When all the layers are complete, place the tray in the oven for 35 minutes at 350-degrees.

I’ve always found that seeing the order of layers helps me keep track of where we are in the process.

This is the order the layers should be in:

  1. sauce
  2. lasagna noodles
  3. sauce
  4. mozzarella cheese
  5. cottage cheese
  6. grated parmesan cheese
  7. lasagna noodles
  8. sauce
  9. mozzarella cheese
  10. cottage cheese
  11. grated parmesan cheese
  12. lasagna noodles
  13. sauce

This thirteen-layer dish will be sure to remain a family-favourite for years and years to come. I’m happy to share my family dish with yours. Enjoy!

Category: November 2016

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