Lasagna

If you like lasagna, you will like this recipe. Actually, it is the Italian Sauce that is the key, and you can even use it on spaghetti as a sauce. But, this is about the lasagna. It is good. This is one recipe Marlys collected that has been requested the most by others.
Lasagne 006
One of the good things about lasagna is that it is a good leftover meal. Recently, when I was visiting my daughter, I made the recipe and took the lasagna with me. Then, each night, we would cut ourselves pieces, heat them in the microwave, and enjoy our supper. One friend that makes this recipe complains that she never has leftovers.

Jackie worked with Marlys in San Diego, and was her matron-of-honor at our wedding.
Lasagne 012

Lasagna

(Jackie Bataitis 1963

  • 1 recipe Italian Sauce -see below
  • 9 lasagne noodles, cooked as package directs and rinsed with cold water
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 lb. mozzarella cheese, sliced thinly
  • 1 lb. ricotta cheese

In a deep 9 x 13″ pan, layer the ingredients as follows:

  • 1/4 the sauce
  • 3 noodles
  • 1/2 the mozzarella
  • 1/2 the ricotta
  • 1/2 the parmesan
  • 1/4 the sauce
  • 3 noodles
  • 1/2 the mozzarella
  • 1/2 the ricotta
  • 1/2 the parmesan
  • 1/4 the sauce
  • 3 noodles
  • rest of sauce
  • extra parmesan sprinkled over the top.

Bake 350 degrees for 45 minutes
(1 hour if it has been made ahead and kept in the refrigerator.
Remove from oven. Allow to stand 10 minutes before serving.

Italian Sauce

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 lb. ground beef (or 1/2 lb. pork sausage + 1 1/2 lb. ground beef)
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 18 oz. tomato paste
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 bay leaves or sweet basil
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 Tablespoons chopped parsley, fresh or dried

Brown meat in hot oil. Add rest of ingredients, stirring well to blend.

Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer about 2 hours (3 hours if doubling recipe).

Remove bay leaves before using or freezing.


Lasagne 004

Marlys bought a special pan in which to make the lasagna; it is deeper than most 9×13 pans.

The problem I have when I make the lasagna is that I never can determine when I have used 1/4 of the sauce, and I always feel I run out of sauce before I finish the top layer. I was told to not worry, the whole package comes together and cooks – bubbling up through the noodles. All I can say is to put a minimum of sauce on the bottom of the pan, and don’t be too generous when you sauce the layers.

One of the tricks I remember from watching Marlys make the recipe is in getting the cheese into the lasagna. You can’t spread riccota in the pan; it just doesn’t work. So, what you do instead is to butter the mozzarella slices, and let the cooking move the cheeses around. Slice the mozzarella thin; you will probably need 18 to 20 slices.

And for the parmesan cheese, we just use the everyday type like in plastic bottles put out by Kraft.
Lasagne 001
Some of my nerdiness shows up in the noodles; 9 noodles means you have 3 noodles per layer, and they fit fairly nicely. but they are just a hair short, so I cook a 10th noodle, and cut it to fill the small space at the end of the whole noodle. Again, everyone tells me that care isn’t necessary.

Leave a Reply