The Best Lasagna

Ingredients – I got this recipe from The Pioneer Woman Cooks but it is very similar to my Lion House Party Lasagna recipe.

This particular adapted recipe drew rave reviews from you kids.

  • 1-½ pound Ground Beef
  • 1 pound Hot Breakfast Sausage
  • 2 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 cans (14.5 Ounce) Whole Tomatoes
  • 2 cans (6 Ounce) Tomato Paste
  • 2 Tablespoons Dried Parsley
  • 2 Tablespoons Dried Basil
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 3 cups Low-fat Cottage Cheese (I added 1/4 of sour cream to the Cottage Cheese mixture)
  • 2 whole Beaten Eggs
  • ½ cups Grated (not Shredded) Parmesan Cheese — (I used what I had in the fridge which was a small bag blend of of Shredded Parmesan, Fontina,  and Asiago Cheese.  I also used this for the topping, in addition to the grated Parmesan)
  • 2 Tablespoons Dried Parsley
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 pound Sliced Mozzarella Cheese (I used 8 oz. of sliced Mozzarella and 8 oz. of sliced Sharp Tillamook because that’s what I had)
  • 1 package (10 Ounce) Lasagna Noodles
  • (add 1/2 Teaspoon Salt And 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil To Pasta Water)

Preparation Instructions

Bring a large pot of water to a boil (I added 1/2 Teaspoon Salt and 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil to water).

Meanwhile, in a large skillet or saucepan, combine ground beef, sausage, and garlic. Cook over medium-high heat until browned. Drain half the fat; less if you’re feeling naughty. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, 2 tablespoons parsley, basil and salt. After adding the tomatoes, the sauce mixture should simmer for 45 minutes while you are working on the other steps.  I did not cover the sauce while it simmered.  I simmered it on low heat until it was thick.

In a medium bowl, mix cottage cheese (and sour cream), beaten eggs, grated Parmesan, 2 more tablespoons parsley. Stir together well. Set aside. Cook lasagna until “al dente” (not overly cooked).

Gently separate the noodles while boiling. My package directions called for 8 minutes.  I boiled the noodles for 7 minutes and then drained them and rinsed them in cold water.  Lay a square of tin foil or parchment paper on the counter and lightly spray it with Pam spray so the noodles won’t stick to it.  Pat each noodle dry with paper towel and lay them on sprayed tin foil to dry.

To assemble:
Arrange 4 cooked lasagna noodles in the bottom of a baking pan (I lightly sprayed the pan), overlapping if necessary.  Spoon half the cottage cheese/sour cream mixture over the noodles. Spread evenly.  I made sure the topping didn’t go over the edge of the noodles, just close to the edges.  Cover cottage cheese with the 8 ounces of sliced mozzarella cheese. Spoon a little less than half the meat/sauce mixture over the top.  Lay the next four noodles down over the meat mixture.  Top with 8 ounces of sliced Sharp American Cheese (orange color).  Then add the remaining meat sauce to the top of this.  At this point I sprinkled my small bag of shredded Parmesan, Fontina and Asiago cheese blend that I happened to have over the lasagna.  Then I sprinkled grated Parmesan cheese to cover the entire top of the lasagna.

I put it in the fridge over night so the flavors would blend.  I took it out of the fridge at noon and let it come to room temperature, which took 4 hours.  It was a lot of lasagna and it was very cold when I took it out. I put it in a preheated 350 degree oven at 4:00 p.m. covered with tin foil and I cooked about 45 minutes, then I removed the foil and cooked about another 15 minutes until it was bubbly all over.  Watch it so the cheese doesn’t get brown on top.  I let the lasagna sit for about 15 minutes or so while I sauted the vegetables.  When we cut the lasagna, it was firm and held its shape.  I had wondered if the added the sour cream would make it too creamy, but it was perfect.

You can freeze it and cook it later or you can keep it in the fridge for 2 days before baking it.

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