Today is a classic lasagna recipe with just a small tweak or two that made the best lasagna I've ever made. The recipe comes from the 1953 edition of Better Homes & Gardens New Cook Book. I found the recipe over at Chez Bonne Femme, who recommended it highly.
A delicious lasagna with a rich sauce and creamy filling that is great served with garlic bread and a green salad on the side.
~I used cottage cheese since I had that on hand and I think the filling turned out wonderful.
~I used a 28 oz. can of San Marzano peeled tomatoes in place of the 2 cans of diced tomatoes. Look for a brand that says "Product of Italy." The brand I got is Cento from Walmart. Chop up the tomatoes into small pieces and add all of the sauce from the can to the recipe. I would highly recommend this substitution as I feel it improved the flavor of the sauce tremendously.
~I had planned on using traditional noodles that are cooked first but no-boil noodles are what came back from the grocery store. I used them and they turned out fine. The recipe calls for two layers of noodles which was only half of the box of noodles. I was a bit worried about this, but I thought the end result was the perfect ratio of noodles to filling, as I don't like lasagna with an over abundance of noodles.
Better Homes & Garden Lasagna (1953 Classic)
Makes 12 servings
- For the sauce:
- 1 pound bulk Italian sausage
- 1 large clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon dried basil leaf, crushed
- Salt to taste (go easy, as this can get salty)
- 2 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes, undrained
- 2 6-ounce cans tomato paste
- For the rest:
- 10 ounces lasagna noodles
- 3 cups fresh Ricotta or creamy cottage cheese
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
- 1/4 cup snipped fresh parsley
- 2 beaten eggs
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound shredded Mozzarella cheese
- Brown the meat; drain excess fat. Add the next 5 ingredients. Simmer, covered, 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Cook noodles according to package directions; drain and rinse.
- Combine remaining ingredients, except the Mozzarella cheese.
- Place half the noodles in a lightly greased 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish; spread with half the ricotta filling; add half the Mozzarella cheese and half the meat sauce. Repeat the layers.
- Bake, uncovered, in a 375°F oven about 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated through. Let stand 15 minutes before cutting into squares (filling will set up slightly).
Make-Ahead Directions: You can assemble as directed; cover and refrigerate up to 24 hours. Add about 15 minutes more to the bake time.
Slightly adapted from the Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook, 1953 edition.