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Turkey Lasagna Recipe, Classic Lasagna Using Ground Turkey Instead of Beef.
This recipe is featured in a great collection of hubpages recipes by 2patricias
Lasagna is a classic Italian dish named for the large flat noodles it's made with. To call a dish lasagna it can be any ingredients layered between lasagna noodles. Most commonly we see meat in a tomato sauce and mixture of cheeses. While that is exactly what I am presenting for you here, there are many possibilities. A few of which I will be creating hubs for in the near future.
Using ground turkey as the meat in this dish isn't common. Usually lasagna is made with beef or a beef and pork mixture. Turkey produces a less "greasy" result while also making it a healthier option. A serving (3 ounces) of only 10% ground beef has 20% daily value of saturated fat. Meanwhile a serving (4 ounces) of ground turkey has only 10%. Plus haven't we all heard how important it is to eat white poultry over red meats. Especially with red meats being associated with terrible health problems such as heart disease and colon cancer.
- 1 package lasagna noodles
- 1 pound lean ground turkey
- 2 24oz jars pasta sauce
- 2-6 cloves garlic, amount to taste
- 16 oz ricotta cheese
- 16 oz mozzarella cheese, Shredded or finely chopped
- 4 oz (1/2 cup) shredded fresh parmesan cheese
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
A note on ingredients
Packaged dry lasagna noodles come in two varieties; no boil and regular which you must cook by boiling first. I strongly recommend the no boil variety. In the instructions I will tell you how to work with both, but I must say the no boil is much easier and saves a lot of time.
Both the ricotta and mozzarella are tastier when they are the whole milk variety. I like to avoid mozzarella that are "low moisture," while this variety can be used it isn't as soft and can often become chewy as the top layer. Fresh parmesan and the powdered variety you find in the non refrigerated isles are worlds apart, please don't substitute.
These are the most basic ingredients. In other words use all of them but don't limit yourself to just these. For instance I love to add spinach and chili paste.
- If you are using no boil noodles skip this step. Set a large pot of water to boil. Meanwhile...
- Cook the ground turkey in a large skillet over med-high heat until brown. Drain some of the fat. Return to stove and reduce heat to low.
- Add one whole jar and a third of the other to the meat skillet. Micro grate, finely chop or crush garlic into skillet. Let meaty sauce mixture come to a slow boil.
- Preheat oven to 350'F.
- If you are using no boil noodles skip this step. Boil your lasagna noodles according to package instructions. Once cooked lay them out on a clean surface separately. If they start drying on each other they will "glue" together and cause a huge headache! They should be slightly undercooked.
- In a medium to large mixing bowl combine ricotta, all but 1/2 cup mozzarella, parmesan and eggs. Using your hands to mix in this step is the easiest, and messiest.
- Spread the olive oil and half of the remaining sauce (not the meat mixture) on the bottom of a 13x9 inch casserole pan.
- Add a layer of lasagna noodles on top of the oil and sauce mixture. If you boiled the noodles slightly overlap them. If you are using "no boil" noodles leave about a half inch space between them. They will expand when they are baked.
- Take half the cheese mixture and lay it evenly over the noodles.
- Now layer half of the meat sauce over the cheese.
- Repeat steps 8, 9 and 10 using the remaining cheese and meat sauce.
- Add your last layer of noodles in the same fashion described in step 8. Top with the remaining jarred sauce. Spread it out so there is no noodle uncovered.
- Cover your lasagna with aluminum foil and bake in a 350'F oven. 30 minutes for boiled noodles 45 minutes for "no boil" noodles.
- Remove foil and top with the 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese we put aside in step 6. Bake an additional 5-10 minutes or until cheese is completely melted.
- Cool 10 minutes and serve. Store leftovers in the refrigerator and eat within a week.