Wednesday, December 31, 2008
For some odd reason, I do not know how to make regular lasagna. I'm sure that I could go to any website out there and find a recipe for lasagna, but instead I always buy the box of Creamette and make their vegetarian lasagna that's featured on the back. One reason I make it? Because it's a no-boil recipe and I've discovered that I probably don't make regular lasagna because I'm intimidated as hell at the thought of boiling noodles and trying to assemble a "real" lasagna.
So here's my tricked out version of Creamette's finest - it's a good makeahead dish to throw in the bottom of your fridge, bake on a cold evening and eat the leftovers for the next couple days after that. (Move over Wheaties - I have a new source of breakfast goodness.)
adapted from Creamette
First, saute a clove or two of minced garlic in some olive oil. Add some sliced mushrooms and saute until tender. Then I usually take a can of Hunt's sauce (it's cheap, it makes several meals, I love it) and add it to make the sauce. Recently to please my honey, I added some ground beef to suit his palate.
1 15-16 oz. container of low-fat ricotta cheese
3 c. shredded cheese (I usually use a mix of Italian cheeses - provelone, Parmesan and mozzarella)
Mix these bad boys together.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put 1/2 cup of sauce mix on the bottom of a greased 9x13 pan. Pick up your lasagna noodles and spread on some ricotta mixture. I've never thought about it, but I usually put the noodles cheese down in the pan. I don't think it really matters. You'll get about three or four lasagnas per layer of noodles. I then put down a layer of fresh spinach leaves and top it with some more sauce. Repeat with a layer of cheesy awesome noodles. More spinach and sauce. Finally top with another layer of cheesy noodles. At this point, you should be out of sauce and top this layer with some Parmesan cheese or whatever suits your fancy in the Italian cheese world.
Cover with tin foil and bake the lasagna for 45 to 50 minutes until hot and bubbly. Uncover and let stand for a couple more minutes.
This stuff also freezes well. If you're going to freeze, cover the lasagna with some plastic wrap and then some tin foil. Before baking, remove the plastic wrap and recover with foil. Thawed lasagna can be baked for 45-50 minutes at 350 degrees. Frozen lasagna is going to take you about two hours.