Scholars often speculate that lasagna, a dish known in ancient Rome, was the origin of Italian lasagne.  This is my favorite recipe for lasagne.  It takes about an hour, but it serves 12 and is worth the effort and it feeds a crowd

FOR THE SAUCE:L1090878

  • 1 lb. ground beef or ground Italian sausage

Brown the meat and drain.

ADD:

  • 4 Garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 T. chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 T. chopped fresh basil
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1 T. red pepper flakes
  • 1 28 oz. can Cento Italian Style tomatoes

Bring to a slow simmer, chop tomatoes with a spatula, periodically, while stirring occasionally.  Simmer 30 minutes, chopping as you go.  In the last few minutes, add 2 T. brown sugar.

FOR THE PASTA:

  • Boil a package of lasagne noodles according to directions, usually about 10 minutes, but the point is that you can nearly begin to boil a big pot of water when you start the sauce above.

FOR THE CHEESE:lasagne

  • 3 c. creamy cottage cheese or ricotta (I like to mix one small carton of each)
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 2 t. salt
  • 1 t. pepper
  • 2 t. parsley
  • ½ c. grated parmesan reggiano or pecorino cheese
  • 1. lb. fresh mozzarella cheese sliced thin, for the topping

Combine soft cheeses with eggs and seasonings, everything except the mozzarella.

TO ASSEMBLE:

Layer noodles in 13×9 baking pan.  Cover with cheese.  Layer noodles.  Cover with meat.  Layer noodles.  Continue until pan is full.  Bake 375 degrees for 30 minutes.  Top with mozzarella for final few minutes.  Let stand 10-15 minutes before cutting to serve.