Lasagna. This is one of my families favorite meals. Served right from the oven with a nice loaf of homemade bread or as leftovers with some toasted garlic bread and a glass of red wine. You can never go wrong with lasagna.
I still remember the first time I had lasagna. My sister and I were invited to a gathering at the home of family friends. They were an older Italian couple that lived in Little Italy, a Chicago neighborhood. They lived in a typical wood frame two flat on the first floor.
The gentleman of the house had made the lasagna and was very proud of his masterpiece….It was in the biggest baking tray I had ever seen. I don’t know how that thing fit into his oven it was so big. And the lasagna was delicious. A delicious cheesy, meaty delight. Just one look at that huge tray of food and you knew it was good. I remember nothing else about that day, just the food.
That was the beginning of our families experiments with lasagna. My mother made it soon after that day and we have been eating lasagna ever since.
I am going to give you a basic recipe for my Two Cheese Lasagna. I make my own red sauce from scratch but for this recipe you can use any red sauce you like, store bought in a bottle or your own standard red sauce. I will post my spaghetti sauce in a future post.
You will need the following ingredients:
- 1 box lasagna noodles
- 24 oz red sauce of your choice
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 green pepper
- 1 onion
- 1 pound of ricotta cheese
- 1 1/2 pound of mozzarella cheese
- 2 eggs
Brown the ground beef. Chop the green pepper and onion and add these to the browning meat. Once meat is cooked add your red sauce and simmer for fifteen minutes. While sauce is simmering cook the lasagna noodles according to the package instructions. When noodles are done the fun begins.
Beat the eggs in a bowl and add the ricotta cheese, mix well.
In a large glass baking pan you want to layer the noodles, cheeses and meat sauce one at a time. First place a layer on noodles on the bottom of baking pan, spread half of the ricotta cheese and egg mixture over the noodles and cover that with sauce. Then add another layer of noodles cover noodles with red sauce and sprinkle a layer of mozzarella cheese. Add another layer of noodles, spread the rest of the ricotta cheese and egg mixture over noodles, cover with more sauce.
Keep repeating the layers until all your ingredients have been used, making a layer of mozzarella cheese be your top layer.
Bake at 375 degrees for 40 minutes. When done the lasagna should be hot and bubbling and cheese should be melted. After removing from the oven let your pan sit for a few minutes before cutting and serving. Enjoy.