I guess I am a lot like my Grandparents in the fact that I don't know how to make "just a little" of something when I cook. Some foods are worse that others. For example, the picture you see here is homemade, from scratch, Lasagna. There has to be lots of people around to help eat it or the leftovers go into the freezer. I can't cook "just a little". It's not that I can't break down the ingredients. It's just that what starts out small inevitably becomes huge once all the ingredients are added. I promised more homemade scratch recipes and I have been busy and haven't taken the time to get on here in a while. So, today, you get my Lasagna recipe. I think everyone has their own and mine's not special, not really. But, it's mine and doesn't come frozen in a box. I guess I could package it that way, but, it wouldn't taste as good! It's a simple recipe and remember that I will give you the rough measurements and all the ingredients that I use. You have the choice of how much of what ingredient that you want to use. Just because I use an entire hallick of Baby Portabella Mushrooms doesn't mean you have to. Some folks like the flavor of celery, some don't (I don't put the celery in my Lasagna sauce, but, I do for my Spaghetti sauce). The secret to Lasagna and Spaghetti is all in the sauce. Period. If your sauce doesn't get time to cook, then you don't get all the flavors out of the ingredients and everything winds up lacking in flavor. Ok... here we go.
1 lb. 93/7 Ground Organic Beef (if you can find it. if not, 93/7 Ground is fine.)
1 lb. Bulk Pork Sausage/Italian Sausage
1 large Yellow Onion, peeled and diced
1 Red Bell Pepper, 1 Yellow Bell Pepper, de-seeded and diced
1 can Diced Italian Tomatoes
1 can Tomato sauce
1 large can Tomato paste
1 full hallick Baby Portabellas, sliced
1 lrg. Jar Spaghetti Sauce (your choice of flavor. I use this to help keep the sauce from being too tomatoey)
3 or 4 small cans of sliced black olives
** In a crock pot (I use a 6-quart), combine all your tomato sauces and paste and turn on your crock pot to high. As you dice and slice your veggies, just toss them into the crock pot. Brown the Ground Beef using your prefered seasoning and drain it well. Add it to the crock pot and stir it well. Turn the temp down to low and brown your sausage, drain it, and add it to the mix. Stir it well. For maximum flavor results, it should slow cook for about 4 hours. **If you have to use a pot on the stove to simmer the sauce, you will definately need to use a diffuser between the burner and the pot to keep the sauce from burning. Even on the absolute lowest setting on a burner, it still burns without the diffuser.""
About 4 hours later.....
You will need.....
1 package Lasagna noodles, cooked, cooled of with cold water, and drained. (Rinse them immediately with cold water to prevent them from cooking any further and becoming gooey and sticky)
1 lrg. tub large curd cottage cheese
3 large brown eggs (or 3 Jumbo white eggs)
1 1/2 lbs. Fresh shredded Parmasian Cheese
1 1/2 lbs. Fresh shredded Mozzeralla Cheese
1 lb. Fresh shredded Provolone Cheese
*Pre-heat oven to 350*
In the biggest cake pan you've got, or buy a big aluminum pan like I do, spray the sides with cooking spray.
In a bowl, lightly beat the 3 eggs and then mix the cottage cheese in, making sure that it's blended well.
Now, start your layers beginning with your sauce mix. Just enough to lightly cover the bottom of the pan. Then as follows...
Cottage Cheese mix
Mix of Shredded Cheeses
Sauce...... Repeat until you run out of room or ingredients.
Cover with non-stick aluminum foil. Get a crane to carry it over to the oven and bake for 45 minutes, covered. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes. Turn off the oven and spread any remaining shredded cheeses over the top. Let it sit in the oven until the cheeses melt. Take it out of the oven and let it stand on the table or counter (use hotpads of course) for 15-20 minutes. I mean, you don't HAVE to... it won't hurt. But it makes it so much easier to cut and allows for the flavors to settle. Yeah, Lasagna usually takes me most the day and drives everyone within smelling range crazy....
Hope you enjoy! We do... and now my stomach is growling, very loudly, so, I better go feed it. Next Recipe will be my famous Redneck Mac & Cheese, A Casserole (I promise!!) Until next time......