When it comes to cooking, my friends have extremely varied talent. Some eat out all the time and have trouble boiling water – others could create 10 course meals while sleepwalking. Before I met my husband I was member of the later group and I would get very excited when my cooking friends invited me over for their masterpieces. One such friend is Annette, who gave me the delicious recipe I’m sharing here today.
I thought about waiting to publish this recipe until it got a little colder (it is currently 83 degrees in Chicago) but there’s currently a winter storm west of here and colder weather on the way, so why wait? Plus, I made this a week and a half ago and have been trying to get this written and off my to-do list since the weather turned warmer.
When Mr. B. and I first started living together, we had a month of overlap between moving out of my old apartment and into a house we were renting. Annette was kind enough to let us stay in her guest room while we were waiting to move, and this was Mr. B’s favorite dish from our time there. You can easily double the recipe and freeze an assembled lasagna to cook at another time.
The most important part is the sauce and you will need a large pot to make it. You will also need a 3 quart dish (I like Pyrex) and a cookie sheet.
- 2 tablespoons EVOO
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 27 fresh leaves basil, divided and diced (20 leaves and 7 leaves)
- 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef (we use 90% lean ground sirloin)
- 15 ounce can tomato sauce
- 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
- no-cook lasagna noodles (approximately 12 noodles)
- 16 ounce part-skim ricotta cheese
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 cups finely shredded mozzarella cheese (divided)
- 1 egg
- fresh spinach leaves (a large handful)
- 9-10 slices mozzarella cheese
- salt to taste
- Put a cookie sheet on the bottom rack of your oven and preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Add the EVOO to a large pot over medium heat. Add the diced onion and begin sauteing. Add salt to taste.
- Before onion is finished cooking (before it is translucent) add the minced garlic. Stir and saute for 1 minute.
- Add 20 leaves of chopped basil (set the rest of the basil aside for now) and stir. Add the ground beef to the pot and brown.
- When the ground beef is browned, add the tomato sauce and crushed tomatoes. Bring the sauce to a boil, and let it simmer uncovered for 15-20 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Make sure to keep stirring the sauce and add salt if necessary.
- While the sauce is cooking, prepare the cheese filling.
- Whisk the egg in a medium bowl. Add the ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, remaining basil leaves, and 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese and combine.
- Pour one ladle of sauce into dish and spread out evenly. Place three noodles on top of the sauce.
- Spread the ricotta cheese on the noodles and smooth it out over the noodles.
- Pour another ladle of sauce over the ricotta cheese. Place the 1/3 of the spinach leaves over this sauce layer.
- Take three slices of mozzarella cheese and tear into pieces. Put these pieces over the spinach. Cover the mozzarella cheese with three more noodles. Repeat two more times.
- In case you get confused and can't remember what layer comes next, use this picture to help you.
- After the last noodle layer, you should have 1 more ladle of sauce left in your sauce pot. Pour the remaining sauce over the top noodle layer.
- Put your lasagna in the oven for 30 minutes. Make sure to position it over the cookie sheet to catch any bubbling drops.
- At this point remove the lasagna from the oven and pour the remaining 1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese over the sauce. Return to the oven for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese has melted and started to turn brown.
|Amount Per Serving||As Served|
|Calories 5832kcal Calories from fat 2852|
|% Daily Value|
|Total Fat 317g||488%|
|Saturated Fat 166g||830%|
|Dietary Fiber 34g||136%|
Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs:
|Total Fat||Less than||65g|
|Sat Fat||Less than||25g|
In case you get confused and can’t remember what layer comes next, use this picture to help you.
This is seriously yummy, and worth turning the oven on in the summer. Thank you Annette for sharing this with me and letting me share it with the world. 🙂