Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Secret is in the Sauce

Everyone probably has a lasagna recipe.  And your family probably raves over your lasagna.  But we all like to try new versions of our favorites, right?

I made this lasagna last night, and my son, who never would eat lasagna before, finally ate it and loved it.  So what's so different about mine?  For starters, I make my lasagna with ground beef and Italian sausage.  I put basil and red chili flakes in the sauce for a little kick.  I used six cheeses on top.  And I made my own sauce.  That's the key to this lasagna.  The sauce.  I absolutely love this sauce.  I make it in big batches and freeze smaller portions to use any time I need a red sauce.  So you make your own sauce from scratch too?  Good! I'm so glad to hear it.  But maybe, just maybe, you could hook a girl up and try her sauce???  Please??? Okay, I'm done begging.  But I really think it's worth a shot.

Aren't you just dying to say "reecoata" like Giada de Laurentiis?

1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb ground beef
1/2 lb Italian sausage, removed from the casing
2 T fresh basil, chopped
1 teaspoon oregano
Red chili flake, to taste
Olive oil
Three 15-ounce containers ricotta cheese
2 C shredded Parmesan, divided in half
1 egg
Shredded 6-cheese Italian blend
1 lb lasagna noodles
3-4 C Basic Marinara (click to go to the recipe)

Cook the lasagna noodles according to package directions.

Drizzle some olive oil into a large skillet.  Cook the onion over medium high heat until tender.  Add in the ground beef and Italian sausage and garlic.  Cook, breaking the meat apart, until it is done.  Add in the oregano, chili flake, and season with salt and pepper.  Stir in enough sauce to cover the meat and to desired sauciness.  Heat the sauce through and remove from the heat.  Stir in the basil.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Mix the ricotta, egg, and 1 C of the Parmesan cheese together with a whisk.  In a 9 x 13 pan, layer the lasagna noodles, ricotta mixture, then sauce mixture.  Keep repeating until you end with sauce on top.  Sprinkle as much or as little of the 6-cheese blend over the top.  Top with remaining Parmesan.  Cook about 30 minutes or until heated through and the cheese on top is melted and browned.

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