Pasta Dishes forum: Lasagna made with little Meatballs
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|What I call this is “Lasagna made by an Anal Person” (me) and the following is a photo of it before it goes into the oven! I wish I had another photo of when it’s done, as it looks beautiful and is soooooooo good!
Really, there’s nothing like a good slab of Lasagna and a nice green salad! It’s kind of like Natures Perfect Combo! I still can’t bring myself to using the dehydrated no-boil noodles and I insist on only whole-milk Mozzarella and homemade tomato sauce. I’ve even gotten into making my own Lasagna Noodles lately…but we won’t go there!
I usually make a few pans when I make Lasagna as it’s so time consuming and messy and figure if I’m already doing it, I may as well just go to town!
If you try this recipe - about an hour into it you’ll probably be cursing my name…but after it’s all said and done, it’s so worth it!
This is a long one!
Tomato Sauce (Below)
Meatball Mixture (Below)
4 links of Hot Italian Sausage
16oz whole milk Ricotta Cheese
12 oz of whole milk fancy shredded Mozarella
1 cup of grated Parmesan (Reggiano is best)
½ cup chopped Parsley
12 Lasagna Noodles
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil (for browning Meatballs)
For the Tomato Sauce:
2 28oz cans of Crushed tomatoes
1 14oz can of Tomato sauce
1 onion diced
2 cloves crushed garlic
2 ribs of celery diced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon salt
1tsp ground black pepper
1 Tablespoon white sugar
1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves or 1 teaspoon fresh chopped
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
In a large pot, heat the Olive oil. Add the Diced Onion and Celery and sauté until softened. Stir in crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce. Season with sugar, basil, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and the parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
½ lb each of ground Beef/Pork/Veal
½ cup Italian Bread Crumbs
2 cloves minced Garlic
½ a medium onion chopped fine
½ teaspoon dried Oregano
½ teaspoon dried Rosemary
a few sprigs of Parsley chopped fine
¼ cup Parmesan Cheese
Salt/Pepper to taste
Mix everything together well and form into small ½” to ¾” balls as above (Yes this is a pain!)
Make your Tomato Sauce. It’s best made in advance so you can cool it down. Make the Meatballs using the ingredients above –rolling the meatballs small – at the most ¾” in diameter. Heat your oil in a large frypan and brown the meatballs. Remove to a dish. Remove the casings from the Italian sausage. Crumble up the sausage and in the same fry pan, brown it and chop it as fine as you can (a couple of pulses a Food Processor doesn’t hurt). Remove.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in the boiling water for about 6 minutes. They’ll be a little al dente. Remove each one with tongs and lay on a pan or sheet and separate layers with paper towels or parchment paper.
In a mixing bowl, combine the ricotta cheese with the egg, parsley and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
Spread 1 cup of the tomato sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange 4 noodles lengthwise over sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Evenly layer ½ of the meatballs and ½ of the sausage over the ricotta, add 1 cup of Tomato sauce over the meat. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese. and sprinkle with 1/3 of the Parmesan cheese. Repeat the layer. Finish it off with the remaining noodles and top with a cup of Tomato sauce the remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil and try not to touch the cheese.
Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 50 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 20 minutes. Let it sit for about 15 minutes before serving.
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