Saturday, February 19, 2011

Lasagna made with leftover sauce

Remember the sauce we made last Sunday? Well the meatballs and sausage are long gone, but I had enough sauce left, and the additional requisite ingredients, to make lasagna for dinner. I found some fresh spinach, and the whole onion I'd cooked in the sauce still had some life left in it. There was a pint of ricotta in the freezer, and a box of lasagna noodles in the pantry, so I was good to go. Plus, my hubby LOVES lasagna, so he'll be thrilled. What cook doesn't like satisfied customers?

One box of smooth lasagna noodles
4 cups of sauce
1 bag of baby spinach
1 pint of ricotta cheese
Tbsp fresh parsely
1 egg
Fresh or shredded mozzarella

Mix the pint of ricotta with 1 egg, fresh parsley, salt, pepper, and a handful of Pecorino or Parmesan cheese:

Add some olive oil to a saute pan. Add one clove of sliced garlic and saute for 2-3 minutes. Add the bag of fresh baby spinach, salt and pepper, and saute until tender. About 3 minutes:

I uses two small loaf pans (8" x 3.5"), which are the exact size of the lasagna noodles, so it was very easy to put together. Start by putting a layer of sauce in the bottom of the pan, then place a noodle over it.  There's no need to cook them ahead of time:

Add a layer of ricotta and some spinach. You can also sprinkle a little grated cheese. Cover with a noodle and repeat the process (2 layers of ricotta and spinach):

Now make a layer with sauce and the sliced onion. You can also use sauteed onions, or just the spinach again, if you'd prefer:

After you finish that final layer cover with a noodle and sauce. Sprinkle with a little grated cheese. It should come almost to the top of the pan. Cover loosely with foil, so the foil doesn't touch the tomatoes. Bake in a 325 oven for 1 hour and 10 minutes. 

Remove the foil, sprinkle with grated, or fresh, mozzarella cheese then place under the broiler until the cheese starts to brown:

Remove from the oven and let it sit for at least 20 minutes before serving.  The lasagna needs to set up. If you cut it too soon it will fall apart, and that's not pretty. Plus, like most food it tastes better when it sits for a while. The secret to a delicious lasagna is a good sauce, fresh vegetables and good quality cheeses. Serve with a green salad and enjoy!

Note: Try other veggies,and you can also add a layer of sliced sausage or crushed meatballs.

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