Wednesday, April 15, 2009

At Last -- Lasagna and Garlic Bread

Got this one from Food Network. It is involved and time consuming. I remember as a kid, asking my mom to make lasagna. She told me it was too involved and time consuming. There are easy lasagna recipes out there. The kind that use cottage cheese instead of ricotta. Not all that bad, even. But occasionally - I think involved and time consuming is necessary. I can guarantee, however, that all of your time and energy is more than worth the effort! You will love it, and so will all of the people who are blessed enough to partake.

Basic Red Sauce:

  • 2 (28-ounce) cans whole peeled tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 11/2 cups chopped yellow onions (1 medium yellow onion)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic (about 2 cloves garlic)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans tomato sauce
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon sugar

Place the tomatoes in a large bowl and squeeze to break into small pieces. Set aside.

In a heavy 5-quart pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, salt, basil, oregano and black pepper, and cook, stirring, until soft, 5 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, tomato paste, water, sugar and reserved crushed tomatoes, stir well, and bring to a simmer. Lower the heat to medium-low, and simmer uncovered for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remove from the heat, and use as needed.

Yield: 10 cups (2 1/2 quarts)

You can make this sauce well ahead of time if you like. You can also freeze it.

Moving on...

1-2-3 Lasagna

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 5 cups Basic Red Sauce, recipe follows
  • 1 (15-ounce) container ricotta
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 pound grated Mozzarella
  • 1/2 teaspoon Emeril's Essence
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 12 dried (uncooked) lasagna noodles

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

In a large saucepan, add the ground beef and brown over medium heat. Season with salt, pepper, and Essence. Add the tomato sauce and simmer for 10 minutes.

In a large bowl fold together the ricotta cheese, eggs, 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, 1/2 cup grated mozzarella, the Essence, salt, parsley, basil, and black pepper.

Spread 1 cup of the tomato sauce in the bottom of a 3-quart (13 by 9 by 2-inch) casserole. Lay 3 lasagna noodles lengthwise down the dish. The noodles should not touch one another. Spoon 3/4 cup of the ricotta mixture over the noodles, and spread evenly with a rubber spatula. Sprinkle 1 cup of the mozzarella evenly over the ricotta. Repeat with the remaining ingredients, for a total of 4 layers of noodles. Sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of mozzarella over the top layer of tomato sauce, and top with the remaining 1/2 cup of Parmesan.

Cover the casserole tightly with aluminum foil, and bake, covered, for 1 hour.

Remove the casserole from the oven, and remove the aluminum foil. Return to the oven and bake, uncovered, for 10 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes before serving

I do not know why I used a pink plate for this picture. Duh!

Garlic Bread

  • 1 loaf french bread, split in half lengthwise
  • 12 T butter, soft
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1/2 c shredded parmesan cheese
  • 3/4 tsp Emeril's Essence
  • 2 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/2 tsp salt
Mix together and spread onto the bread. Place on a baking sheet lined with foil. Bake at 350 for 15-18 minutes.


  1. IT LOOKS SO YUMMY! I need to know where you get the Emeril's you have to order it from food network or his site or what?
    Just so you know I have those exact same pink plastic plates. Cool.

  2. Ann-I love this recipe and the garlic bread too! It's been a very long time since I've made either of them! Love the pink plate...must've been for one of your kids?
    FYI-you can buy Emeril's Essence at the grocery store or Walmart.

  3. Ann - I tried these recipes this weekend. Sooo good! The kids even loved it (and they are hard to please).

    Thanks so much for sharing. I am enjoying this blog a lot. I even baked my bacon in the oven Sunday morning. So much easier to clean up and I didn't have to drag the big electric skillet down from the top shelf of my pantry. Thanks so much!