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Homemade Lasagna by Gene Munson Barry

Updated on February 24, 2014

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Cook Time

Prep time: 45 min

Cook time: 1 hour 15 min

Ready in: 2 hours

Yields: Serves six people a two by two inch square.

Homemade Lasagna by Gene Munson Barry

Final Result for my Lasagna
Final Result for my Lasagna | Source

Ingredients

  • 12 Lasagna, Noodles
  • 1 Quart, Homemade tomato sauce
  • 1 Ricotta cheese, Large Container
  • 1/8 cup Basil, Dried chopped
  • 1 head Lettuce, Sliced
  • 1 Medium Tomato, Sliced
  • 1/8 cup Pine Nuts, roasted
  • 1 stick Butter, softened
  • Pinch Salt, kosher
  • Pinch Pepper, Fresh Ground
  • 24 Ounces Mozzarella Cheese, Sliced or Ground

Directions:

  1. Fill a medium pot with water then place it on your stove at the high setting to boil the water.
  2. Count out the Lasagna noodles. Add a pinch of salt to the boiling water.
  3. Place the noodles in the boiling water, being careful to not splash the water and burn yourself. Cover the pot and allow to boil until the pasta is cooked.
  4. Carefully pour out the hot water a lasagna noodles into a colander. Immediately rinse with cold water. I, then, place the cooled noodles on a flat (cookie) sheet to further cool.

Cool the cooked noodles.

Cooked noodles flat on a tray to allow to cool.
Cooked noodles flat on a tray to allow to cool. | Source

Next Step

Next begin cooking your ground beef. I have several cast Iron pans that came from my wife's mother and my grandmother. I use a spatula to break the meat into small crumbles.

Ground Beef Cooking

Ground beef cooking.
Ground beef cooking. | Source

Prepare Your Colander

As the ground beef is cooking I prepare my colander placing it in my sink to drain the excess fat from the cooked beef.

Colander for draining excess fat.

Draining Ground bBeef

Carefully remove the cooked beef from the heat, and pour into the colander. Make sure that you do not burn yourself as you pour the meat into the colander. I have several sizes, but to drain the ground beef I prefer to use this smaller size pictured above. I usually use a flat serving spatula to scrape the meat into the colander. As the meat drains I grease the baking dish lightly. I use a paper towel, dab it in butter and then coat the bottom and sides of my baking dish.

My backing dish wiped down with real butter.
My backing dish wiped down with real butter. | Source

I Add the First Layer of Tomato Sauce

I don't usually like store bought tomato sauce, so I use three kinds of tomatoes and make my own sauce. Also I make homemade sauce so I can control the herbs that are added to the sauce. I grow my own herbs like basil, and oregano. We do not like onions or garlic so I do not use this when making tomato sauce

Home made tomato sauce
Home made tomato sauce | Source
I start by spreading a layer of tomato sauce to the bottom of the baking dish.
I start by spreading a layer of tomato sauce to the bottom of the baking dish. | Source

Begin Layering

After you have put a layer of tomato sauce on the bottom, begin to layer in this order: noodles, ricotta cheese, mozzarella, ground beef then tomato sauce. When laying down the noodles you can overlap them a little bit. Ricotta can be hard to handle. I drop spoonsful here and there and then very gently spread it out. The ground beef I "sprinkle" on with my hand.

I continue to layer until I have the whole pan filled.

Layering Ingredients

add layers of the sauce, ricota, lasagna noodles, to fill the dish.
add layers of the sauce, ricota, lasagna noodles, to fill the dish. | Source

Add Herbs

As I layer the ingredients, I use my dried herbs and sprinkle over the layers. I also add salt and pepper to taste.

Lasgna ready to bake

The final laasagna ready to bake.
The final laasagna ready to bake. | Source

Carefully Transfer

I carefully transfer the final dish to the oven. Using a pot holder I pull out one of the shelves to make it easier to place the dish. I have the oven preheated to 350 degrees, (which I maintain the baking process). Carefully slide the shelf back into the oven. I do this slowly so that the dish of lasagna does not slide and spill. Bake for approximently 1 hour and 15 minutes. Judge and bake accordingly.

While the Lasagna is Baking.

Make a salad!
Make a salad! | Source

Keep busy

As the lasagna is baking I usually prepare a salad to have with our meal of lasagna. I prefer to purchase a whole head of lettuce, It seems to last longer than the bagged salad mixes. I fill salad bowls half way with lettuce. Next I cut up mushrooms, (see photo). With the salad in the photo I had some left over fresh beans from my garden so I added them. I add sliced up tomatoes and we like black olives so I slice them and add.

Next I carefully brown some pine nuts in a small cast Iron pan with butter. You need to keep a close eye on the pine nuts as you roast them because they can burn super easily. After they cool use a spoon and scoop them onto the salad. You can use the dressing of your choice, we usually have several kinds on hand such as Blue cheese, French, Raspberry Walnut, Zesty Itallian, etc.

Brown the Pine Nuts

Carefully brown the pine nuts.
Carefully brown the pine nuts. | Source

Cut the Finished Lasagna

Use pot holders to remove the cooked lasagna from the oven (being careful to not get burned). Allow the finished lasagna to rest for about 5 minutes on the top of the oven. This makes it easier to cut and serve. I have this serving spatula that is approximately 2 inches wide that I use to cut the lasagna in both directions. This makes it easier to scoop out and serve once everything is ready.

Finished Lasagna

Serve the cut lasagna to your family and guests.
Serve the cut lasagna to your family and guests. | Source

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    • GeneMunsonBarry profile image
      Author

      Gene Munson Barry 3 years ago from Westfield

      I use Beefsteak, Plum, Sometimes Cherry, and whatever the local market carries that are Hot House tomatoes. Then my own home grown herbs to flavor the sauce.

    • vibesites profile image

      vibesites 3 years ago from United States

      What kinds of tomatoes do you use for your sauce? It would be very helpful. Thanks for sharing your recipe. :)

    • abetterwaytolive profile image

      Casey Johnson 3 years ago from Sanger, Texas

      Looks fantastic! Very well organized and easy to follow also. I will try this recipe for sure very soon. Great hub.

    • PaoloJpm profile image

      John Paolo B.Magdaluyo 3 years ago from Philippine

      that is one yeah yummy meal for dinner!