As a couple or group of friends living together, there comes a time when you are tired of ordering in. All of a sudden, you have a craving for a home cooked meal just like your mom or grandma made when you visited during the holiday. If you are looking for a simple meal to prepare, then the classic lasagna is the best meal. It is a simple Italian dish that is not only a family classic but its worth the time and effort invested during preparation. Furthermore, it makes a great party food as it is easy to prepare.
Having enjoyed ordering in for a long time, you probably don’t have a clue where to start. With this how to make cheese lasagna guide, you will finally prepare the dish in time for a party or dinner with your partner. The best thing about the meal is that it can be made into a healthy dish if you are looking for a low fat alternative. You can prepare it ahead of time and refrigerate it up to 24 hours.
a. Two cloves of minced garlic
b.Fourteen half ounce can of diced tomatoes, undrained
c.Eight ounce can of tomato sauce
d.One cup of chopped onion
e.Twelve ounces of bulk Italian sausage or ground beef
f.One tablespoon of dried Italian seasoning. Make sure it’s crushed
g.Six dried lasagna noodles
h.One beaten egg
i.One fifteen ounce container of ricotta cheese. You can also opt for two cups of cream style drained cottage cheese
j.Quarter cup of grated Parmesan cheese
k.Six ounces of shredded mozzarella cheese
l.Quarter teaspoon of black pepper
m.One teaspoon of fennel seeds
a. One large pan to make the sauce
b. Glass baking dish
c.Large pot for boiling pasta
Preparation time – 20 minutes
Cooking/baking time – 30 to 45 minutes
Serves 8 to 12 people
Step One –Pre-heat the oven
Start by preheating the oven to 350 degree F or 175 degree C. The reason for pre heating your oven is to prepare it early enough in order to attain the right temperature. Set the heat to medium and place the skillet. This will get the skillet nice and hot. Proceed to place the onions, garlic and ground beef. Wait for the beef to cook. This should take a period of 6 to 9 minutes. Make sure the beef has turned brown. Drain the fat and proceed to place the cooked ground beef in a large sauce pan. Take a look at what you have prepared and it should appear great. If not, you have done something wrong. Just repeat the instructions from the beginning and you should get it right.
Step Two – Boil the lasagna noodles
Place a large pot of water on a heat source and let it boil. Once it has boiled, transfer your lasagna noodles in the boiling water. Take care when doing so as the water is very hot and you don’t want to scald yourself accidentally. Let the lasagna noodles cook for a period of 10 to 12 minutes. Once the time is over, your lasagna noodles should be nice and tender but a little bit al dente. You need to rinse and drain the water away. Again, take care when draining the hot water as it could scald you if the pot is mishandled. Rinse them in cold water.
Step Three – Prepare the meat sauce
In step one, you had already started preparing the meat sauce. The meat sauce is in a large saucepan. Place the large sauce pan on medium heat, add the tomato sauces, the chopped dried tomatoes, Italian seasoning and black pepper. Let the mixture boil on the sauce pan for some time. During this period, you need to stir it occasionally. This helps to ensure that every ingredient is well cooked. After a few minutes, your meat sauce should be nice and thick. It should smell wonderful too.
Step Four – Prepare the filling
Take the ricotta cheese, the egg, grated parmesan cheese and add them into the large sauce pan. Stir in order to mix up the ingredients well. Let the mixture cook for a few minutes before switching off the heat. Meanwhile, start preparing the large glass dish where you will transfer the mixture for the final procedure. Useful tip – your glass dish should measure 13 by 9 inches. This will have a volume of around 3 liters.
Step Five – Prepare the classic lasagna
Start by spreading half a cup of the meat sauce over the glass baking dish bottom. Proceed to layer half of the cooked lasagna noodles on top of the sauce. Make sure to trim or overlap if necessary to ensure a good fit. Spread the filling and top it with half of the remaining meat sauce and half of mozzarella cheese. Repeat the process until all the layers are complete. If you desire, you can sprinkle some Parmesan cheese on top.
Place your glass baking dish on a baking sheet in the oven. Bake the lasagna for 30 to 35 minutes. Other chefs recommend a period of up to 45 minutes. You can also bake until the cheese is bubbly or the top is golden. Once the time has elapsed, let it sit for 10 minutes before serving.
Enjoy your classic family lasagna.