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The L's of Italian Cooking

Updated on June 29, 2011

I am wondering if the L's of Italian Cooking will have your mouth watering. I know mine is!! The letter "L" brings the versatile

lasagne (lah.sa.nyay) ~ giant noodles, over an inch wide, usually baked in the oven after they have been boiled.

My Helpful Hint: If I am making a lasagne with sauce, I don't boil the noodles. I line the casserole with the hard noodles and let them cook in the sauce. Of course, if you use this tip, you will need to add extra sauce each time you layer so the noodle doesn't dry out. This saves you time from the continual stir and is just as delicious.

LASAGNE RECIPES

LASAGNE NEAPOLITAN STYLE

What You Will Need:

1 pound curly lasagne

1 pound pork shoulder

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 minced onion

1 sliced clove garlic

1 teaspoon minced parsley

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 1/2 cans tomato paste

2 cups warm water

5 quarts water

3 teaspoons salt

1 pound ricotta

1 tablespoon hot water

1 pound mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced

4 tablespoons grated cheese

What To Do:

Place the pork in a saucepan with oil, onion, garlic and parsley. Brown the pork on all sides. Add the salt, pepper, and tomato paste diluted in the two cups of warm water. Cover pan and cook 2 hours, adding a little water from time to time, if needed. This makes about 2 cups of sauce. If you use my hint, I would double the sauce, so remember to double up on the ingredients too. Remove the pork from sauce. Keep the pork warm.

In another pan bring the 5 quarts of water to a boil, add the salt and drop in the lasagne. Or, if you prefer, use the hint I shared with you.

Cook for 15 minutes or until tender, stirring almost constantly to prevent the noodles from sticking together. Drain. Mix the ricotta with 1 tablespoon warm water, making a soft paste.

In a casserole, arrange the lasagne in layers, alternating with the sauce, ricotta and grated cheese, End with the noodles, sauce and grated cheese, sliced mozzarella. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. If you use my hint, I would bake at 350 for about 35-40 minutes. Just check to make certain the noodle is tender. If you choose this method, I'd add the mozzarella during the last 20 minutes to prevent it from overcooking. The pork is an added dish. So delicious!

LAVISHED LASAGNE

What You Will Need:

1 pound lasagne

1/2 pound ground beef

1/2 pound ground pork

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 minced medium onion

1 clove garlic

1 teaspoon minced parsley

1 1/2 cans tomato paste

2 cups water

5 quarts water

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

3 teaspoons salt

1 pound lasagne

1 pound mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced

3/4 pound ricotta

2 tablespoons grated cheese

What To Do:

Brown beef and pork in saucepan with oil, onion, garlic and parsley. Add the tomato paste, 2 cups water, salt and pepper. Simmer 1 1/2 hours.

Bring the 5 quarts of water to a boil. Add the salt and lasagne and cook 15 minutes or until tender, stirring almost continually to prevent sticking together. Drain. Again, you can use my tip, if you prefer remembering to make extra sauce too. Next, arrange the lasagne in a casserole in layers, alternating with sauce, noodle, sauce, some mozzarella, some ricotta, some grated cheese. Repeat ending with lasagne, sauce, grated cheese and mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes ~~ or ~~ 350 for about 35-40 minutes if you use my tip.

SPINACH LASAGNE

What You Will Need:

3 cups flour

1/2 pounds cooked spinach, drained and strained

2 eggs

1/4 teaspoon salt

Ingredients to make sauce which are listed above

grated cheese

1/2 cup butter

What To Do:

Make a flour mound on a large pastry board. Scoop a center well. Place the strained spinach, eggs and salt in the well and work into the flour. Knead for 20 minutes, adding a little more flour if and when necessary. Divide the dough into two parts and roll each part paper thin. Place the dough sheets on clean kitchen towels to dry. Let them dry for 1 hour. Fold each sheet and cut across dough with sharp knife. Make ribbons of dough 3/4 inch wide. Loosen the ribbons and cook in boiling salt water for 1/2 hour. Drain. Make a sauce using the method from one of the recipes given above. In a large casserole place a layer of lasagne, sauce, grated cheese and a dot of butter. Repeat ending with lasagne, sauce, grated cheese and the remainder of the butter. Bake in 350 oven for 45 minutes. Sprinkle with the remainder of grated cheese. Serve.

This is a delicious recipe and because it is virtually all homemade, it is something you can serve with a real sense of achievement. Nothing beats homemade. Enjoy!


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