Sunday, January 11, 2009


The pictures of this lasagna from Lottie and Doof are so beautiful -- the sauce is so... RED! I've never made lasagna before, or even tomato sauce from scratch, really. So I attempted this recipe for dinner tonight. Gotta get all the good stuff in before school starts again tomorrow.

I used TJ's Italian chicken sausage instead of the suggested turkey, and realized at the last minute I didn't have red pepper flakes, so put a bit of cayenne in instead.

Lasagna from Lottie + Doof

Ina Garten’s Turkey Lasagna (adapted)

* 2 tablespoons olive oil
* 1 cup chopped yellow onion (1 onion)
* 3 garlic cloves, minced
* 1 1/2 pounds sweet Italian turkey sausage, casings removed
* 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes in tomato puree
* 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
* 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
* crushed red pepper flakes, to taste (I use about half a teaspoon)
* 2 teaspoons kosher salt
* 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1/2 pound lasagna noodles
* 15 ounces ricotta cheese
* 3 to 4 ounces creamy goat cheese, crumbled
* 1 cup grated Parmesan, plus 1/3 cup for sprinkling
* 1 extra-large egg, lightly beaten
* 1 pound fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Heat the olive oil in a large (10 to 12-inch) skillet. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes over medium-low heat, until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the sausage and cook over medium-low heat, breaking it up with a fork, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until no longer pink. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, the basil, red pepper flakes, 1 1/2 teaspoons of the salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Simmer, uncovered, over medium-low heat, for 15 to 20 minutes, until thickened.

Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with the hottest tap water. Add the noodles and allow them to sit in the water for 20 minutes. Drain.

In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta, goat cheese, 1 cup of Parmesan, the egg, remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Set aside.

Ladle 1/3 of the sauce into a 9 by 12 by 2-inch rectangular baking dish, spreading the sauce over the bottom of the dish. Then add the layers as follows: half the pasta, half the mozzarella, half the ricotta, and one 1/3 of the sauce. Add the rest of the pasta, mozzarella, ricotta, and finally, sauce. Sprinkle with 1/3 cup of Parmesan. Bake for 30 minutes, until the sauce is bubbling.

This lasagna is really delicious, filling, and smells damn good while it's cooking. It also felt like an accomplishment to make the tomato sauce from scratch, and each step felt purposeful. And the lasagna will last all week!

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