It is freezing cold and there is no better time to eat something warm for the tummy. I made lasagna last night. I've never been a big fan of lasagna. Growing up, my mom would make the worst lasagna. Ever. I hated lasagna night. It's just not her forte. But my brother on the other hand, would beg for it. I don't know what kind of crazy tastebuds he had. I always always thought her lasagna was too dry and she never used enough cheese in my opinion.
My brother would beg so much for it - my mom would make two in one go. That meant lasagna for at least three days and then another lasagna in the freezer - just waiting. That one was the worst. Not only was it dry and lacking enough cheese, now it would taste like a leftover meal from the freezer. My mom has no idea I do not like her lasagna.
To this day, she offers it up like its a prize winning dish. Blame my brother. Every time she tells me how my brother calls her up and begs for the lasagna, I hold back a laugh. I seriously need to ask him what it is he likes about mom's lasagna.
I developed an aversion to lasagna - until one day, Cowboy asked for it. Oh, lord.
I need to remember to keep him away from my mom's version before he becomes a begger. But, back then I found a recipe, made it and it was gosh darn good. I wish I kept the recipe because every lasagna since then has been like my mom's, dry and lacking enough cheese. Even Cowboy admits.
I think it's because after said greater than mom's lasagna, I told Cowboy about how my mom makes the worst lasagna. Actually, I think I've told everyone but my mom. Oy. Well, I was parading the fact that I made a great lasagna and then boom! no more for me. Until last night...
1 pound of lean ground beef (I used 96/4)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 pinch of red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 sweet yellow onion, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 (15 ounce) container ricotta cheese (I used non fat)
1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese
9 lasagna noodles, cooked per instructions
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
4 cups of marinara sauce (homemade or store bought)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a skillet over medium heat, cook ground beef, making sure to break it up into crumbles. Add the onions, garlic powder, dried basil, dried oregano and salt & pepper to taste. Once the meat is brown and the onion is tender, add the garlic and cook for 60 seconds, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and drain any grease.
In a large bowl, add ricotta, eggs, 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese, fresh chopped basil, salt & pepper to taste. Combine until mixed thoroughly. Meanwhile, cook the lasagna noodles per instructions then drain.
Layer a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with just enough sauce to cover the bottom of the pan. Lay three lasagna noodles in the pan. Spread some of the ricotta mixture on the noodles, then spoon some of the ground beef mixture on top and sprinkle with a bit of mozzarella, spoon some sauce over the cheese; repeat layering. Finish with a layer of noodles and remaining sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and remaining 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese. Bake covered in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes. Enjoy.
The recipe is from For the Love of Cooking.