Sunday, January 1, 2017

Christmas Lasagna #Sicilian #Dinnerisready #GardenCuizine #holidayrecipe

 Christmas Lasagna
Mom didn't cook much, but she always made us lasagna at Christmas. Last year we made lasagna for Christmas and enjoyed it. This year we made it again and declared lasagna our official Christmas dinner entree! 
Here is my version of Mom's Christmas Lasagna recipe. I may adjust this the next time I make it, so do check back. 

Note: if you are vegetarian, you can sub Boca burger crumbles for the ground beef. And, if you are vegan, simply swap the ricotta with firm tofu, omit the eggs and use soy cheeses.
Ingredients
1 lb. Ground beef (or half beef, half Italian sausage; or for Vegetarian use Boca burgers crumbled)
1 med Onion, chopped
Garlic, 2 cloves chopped

pot of boiling water
9 lasagna noodles 

Homemade pasta sauce (make in advance and freeze in quarts for convenience)
 

1, 32 oz container ricotta cheese (lately we've been using whole milk ricotta)
2 large eggs, whisked
1 1/2 cups (plus another cup for topping) shredded mozzarella
1/4-cup (plus another 1/8 cup for topping) Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper (about 3 twists)
pinch ground nutmeg (5 swipes fresh on rasp)
1 1/2 Tablespoons dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon oregano
Putting it all together
Preheat oven to 350 deg F.

Set aside a 13 x 9 x 2-inch Pyrex baking dish
  • Saute onion and garlic; stir in the ground beef and cook. (*Mom would include ground Italian sausage too) Drain fat and set aside.
  • Warm up pasta sauce in a sauce pan; cover and set aside.
  • In a bowl, using a rubber spatula, combine the ricotta, mozzarella, salt, pepper, nutmeg, 1 T parsley and eggs 
  • Cook lasagna noodles al'dente; rinse under cold water and set aside.
  • Spoon a layer of sauce on the bottom of baking dish
  • Place 3 noodles, side by side, over the sauce
  • Add a layer of blended cheese (I used a small scoop to portion it out and then pressed it down)
  • Add a layer of cooked ground beef
  • Top with a layer of sauce and repeat with another layer. Note: any leftover ricotta cheese can be saved for other recipes.
  • Top the final layer with sauce and sprinkle with additional shredded mozzarella and Parmesan and dried herbs: oregano and remaining parsley.
  • Cover with foil and bake for 40-45 minutes. Remove cover and cook another 10-15 minutes or until top layer of cheese is golden
  • Leftovers can be frozen and reheated.
      Serve with a tossed garden salad and/or a generous side of veggies like kale or broccoli rabe
      Our Christmas desserts this year included pumpkin pie and holiday cookies made with spices, pumpkin seeds and dried fruit. Hope your holiday was just as wonderful!
      Buon Natale!  
      Blog post and photos Copyright (C)Wind. All rights reserved. 
      Merry Christmas! Blessings for a Happy and Healthy 2017

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