January 19, 2011

White Lasagna

My oldest daughter tends to not like lasagna with red sauce...or I guess its actually a dislike of cooked tomatoes in general. She eats them raw by the bucket load, but when it comes to cooked tomatoes she prefers another sauce option. Don't get me wrong, shes not picky. She'll eat what is set before her, but she would rather have Alfredo or Bechamel sauce on pasta.

When I said I'd be making lasagna with white sauce today she was sort of iffy about the idea. I've made it before, but its been a while & last time it was all veggie. This time I decided to go meat, cheese, spinach & white sauce. Don't judge....its not something you eat every week. Its pretty darn rich & a whole 9x13 pan will last us (a family of 5) for 3 meals at least.

You can make this easier for yourself or harder. Neither is really that hard...but the oven ready noodles take more moisture to cook & takes longer baking time to get the noodles nice & soft. You pick which is harder or easier for yourself.

This is amazing with a simple green salad & French bread!

1 box lasagna noodles (oven ready or pre-boiled normal)
8-10 cups of Alfredo or Bechamel  sauce (thats 3 jars of bottled sauce if you use it, plus 2 jars of water if doing oven ready noodles)
1 large bag of cut frozen spinach
1 (15oz) container of ricotta
1 (12oz) container of cottage cheese
1lb ground beef (80/20)
1lb ground sausage (mild)
8-10 cloves of garlic (chopped)
1-2 tsp salt
2 tsp red pepper flakes
4-6 cups of grated cheese (Any mixed white cheeses: jack, mozzarella, pecorino-romano, Parmesan.)
2 cups of Italian seasoned bread crumbs

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees (400 if convection).
  • Put entire bag of frozen spinach into a bowl & microwave on high for 8-10 minutes.
  • Drain spinach in a colander, pressing to get all excess water out.
  • Brown beef & sausage in a non-stick pan.
  • Add garlic, salt, red pepper flakes towards the end & brown a bit more.
  • In a large mixing bowl (Kitchen Aid) put all the meat, spinach, ricotta & cottage cheese. 
  • Blend all until well mixed.
  • In the bottom of a 9x13 casserole dish place a heavy layer of sauce.
  • Then layer in the following order...noodles, sauce, filling, cheese, light sauce, noodles, sauce, filling, cheese, light sauce, noodles, sauce, filling, cheese, light sauce....followed by noodles, heavy sauce, cheese & bread crumbs. 
  • Place casserole dish onto a baking sheet. Cover casserole with foil. 
  • Bake covered for 30 minutes & then uncovered for 30 minutes. (This is the timing for uncooked/oven ready. It only takes about 30-40 for pre-boiled noodles.)
  • Shut off the oven & let the lasagna sit inside for 30-40 minutes. If you cut the lasagna straight out of the oven it will turn into a lasagna puddle on your plate. This lets the cheese re-firm up a bit & everything will not ooze out. 

1 comment:

Cheryl said...

This sounds good. I can't wait to try this one Sarah. Does this reciepe freeze well? Maybe Mary will try this one.