Easy lasagna recipes | tomato & ricotta | meat sauce & cream





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***TOMATO & RICOTTA RECIPE***

This recipe is formulated for an 8 inch (20 cm) square pan and would serve 4-6 people.

1 pound (454g) box of dry lasagna noodles fitted to your pan (you might not need all of it; I use De Cecco Lasagna No. 1, which fits the 8 inch pan)
1 28 oz (800g) can of crushed tomatoes (you might not need all of it; I use Pastene Kitchen Ready or Muir Glen)
1 pound (454g) ricotta cheese
1 pound (454g) grated mozzarella (you might not need all of it)
1/2 cup (50g) grated parmesan or pecorino
olive oil
salt
seasonings (I use garlic & onion powder, dried oregano/basil/parsley/marjoram, dried chili flakes and pepper)
fresh herb for garnish (I use basil)

Heat oven to 350ºF (180ºC).

Cover the bottom of the pan with a layer of crushed tomatoes, drizzle in a little olive oil, and season that layer lightly with salt and your other herbs and spices. Lay in the first layer of lasagna noodles (don’t parboil them first), and dust them with a little salt. Lay in a layer of ricotta and sprinkle on some mozzarella and parmesan. Lay in your second pasta layer and sprinkle them with a little salt. Lay in more tomatoes and repeat until you have built at least four layers, with tomatoes atop the final layer, making sure to reserve tome mozzarella for melting on the top later.

Cover the pan tightly with foil and bake it for about 45 minutes. Take the foil off, sprinkle on some mozzarella and bake for another 15 minutes. At the very end, turn on the broiler (grill) to brown the cheese to your liking — this should only take a couple minutes, so watch it closely.

Let cool at least 15 minutes before cutting and serving with fresh herbs. If you want a tidier presentation, chill the lasagna whole in the fridge. When it’s firm, you’ll get cleaner edges when you cut. Reheat the cut pieces on top of a little splash of water in a covered baking dish in the oven for 15 minutes. Uncover and broil on a little more mozzarella, to make the top look nicer.

***MEAT SAUCE & CREAM RECIPE***

This recipe is formulated for an 8 inch (20 cm) square pan and would serve 4-6 people — NOTE this is half the size of the lasagna I baked in the video. I’m giving the meat sauce recipe from the video below, but you could make it with about two pounds (a kilo) of frozen meat sauce from my old recipe here: https://youtu.be/V5WR-K0zJYs

1 pound (454g) box of dry lasagna noodles fitted to your pan (you might not need all of it; I use De Cecco Lasagna No. 1, which fits the 8 inch pan)
1 cup (half pint, 236mL) cream
1/2 cup (50g) grated parmesan or pecorino
a little grated mozzarella, just for the top
2-3 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
salt
fresh herb for garnish (I use basil)

For the meat sauce:

1 pound (454g) ground beef
1 28 oz (800g) can whole peeled tomatoes (I use Muir Glen)
a squeeze of tomato paste (about a tablespoon)
1 large onion
1 large carrot
olive oil
salt
seasonings (I use garlic & onion powder, dried oregano/basil/parsley/marjoram, dried chili flakes and pepper)
balsamic vinegar

To make the meat sauce, peel and dice the onion and carrot, and cook them in a little olive oil in a wide pan over high heat until soft and starting to brown, 4-5 minutes. Push the veg to the edges of the pan and smash the meat into the center, making a wide, flat disk. When you can smell the meat browning, start scraping the bottom of the pan and stirring, using the moisture of the remaining raw meat to deglaze (you might want to turn the heat down a bit at this point).

When all the meat has turned color, stir in a squeeze of tomato paste and let it brown for a moment. Before it burns, deglaze with the juice from your can of tomatoes. Squish the tomatoes with your hand and stir them in, along with a pinch of salt and whatever other seasonings you have. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for at least an hour, stirring occasionally. Taste for seasoning and stir in a little splash of the vinegar. NOTE: This will give you as much as twice the meat sauce you will need for an 8×8 inch lasagna. Freeze the rest.

To make the lasagna, heat oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Cover the bottom of the pan in a layer of cream, then lay in the first layer of lasagna noodles (don’t parboil them first). Sprinkle the noodles with a little salt and chopped garlic, then lay in a layer of the meat sauce. Sprinkle the meat sauce with parmesan, lay in another pasta layer and repeat until you have at least four layers, with at least a little meat sauce on top. Drizzle the rest of the cream on top.

Bake according to the directions I gave for the previous lasagna — I would copy and paste those here, but YouTube won’t allow me enough characters in the description box.

Lasagna Recipe