Lasagna – 10/30/10
I really enjoy a good lasagna, but I’m pretty picky. It seems every Italian establishment has some variation of the dish, and they vary widely in types of meat, types of cheese, vegetables, mushrooms…you name it. I like my lasagnas heavy on the meat and the noodles, so I often find my homemade dish the most satisfying.
I like my lasagna pretty simple. I often experiment with various types of meats…sausages, ground beef, veal and pork, but I keep to fairly standard mozzarella cheese and a basic tomato sauce.
I started with making a quick tomato sauce. I first seared the beef, then sauteed the shallots and garlic before crushing some San Marzano tomatoes. I simmered this down with fresh basil and the beef just until my sauce reached the consistency I wanted. Then, I just started layering my sauce, no-boil lasagna noodles (so convenient!), and parmesan and mozzarella cheeses all the way to the top of my dish.
After about an hour in the oven…voila! I was actually pretty lucky to get a perfectly browned crust on top. I was pretty happy with this lasagna as the ratio of noodles, meat, sauce and cheese was just to my liking. My lasagnas can be fairly inconsistent, but this one was a winner!
looks good! I’ve been wanting to make a smaller portion of lasagna in a loaf pan…
I like keeping my lasagne simple too — I usually use a mozzarella / ricotta blend for cheese and maybe a parm-breadcrumb topping, and usually meatfree.
The smaller pan is genius really… mmm, I’m gonna give that a try.
H.C. – Lasagna is one of those dishes that is so hearty already, it doesn’t really even need meat. That parm-breadcrumb topping sounds MONEY – I may have to try that next time!
Christina and Tsz – I like using a loaf pan because it’s often deeper (more layers) and to minimize leftovers. Although it still tastes very good the next day, I always find it hard to reheat evenly!
hmm usually there is some sort of ricotta cheese mixture too…but i guess thats just filler? I find that it adds a richness to the dish, and also a creaminess that makes lasagna so comforting!
I’ve also done a meat/veggie lasagna combo. I know a lot of people who just prefer all meat though. if you dont mind the veggies (grilled squash and eggplant layers), i would suggest it!
I’ve actually never tried using ricotta at home, but I agree that it gives a really nice creaminess. As for the veggies, I’ve really liked putting some zucchini in, as well as spinach sometimes. It makes me feel a little less guilty about the lasagna!