I had a 4 am wake up call this morning. Breakfast was at 5:30. I love feeding the crew in the fall! The time hasn't changed yet and it doesn't get light until late and I don't have to set my alarm for 2:30 am. I can do 4 am!
When I have to do 2:30 it takes me 5 minutes to wipe the sleep out of my eyes and find the kitchen, I'm on auto pilot when I punch the setting to turn on the oven, and I have to look twice to make sure that really is sugar I'm filling the sugar bowl with and not salt!
I made Lasagna for dinner today and rounded it out with green beans, a salad, and cheese bread, with Auntie's Chocolate Cake and Ice Cream for dessert.
Today I'll share my Lasagna recipe and I'll share Auntie's Chocolate Cake some other time. The green beans are just green beans, the salad is just salad, and the cheese bread is where I cheat and buy the 5 cheese bread. After all the biscuits and rolls I've made this week, on occasion, I give myself permission to take a shortcut. The 5 Cheese Bread is it.
This is a combination of numerous recipes that through the years, have morphed into our favorite Lasagna.
I make my lasagna in a blue enamelware pan that is 12" x 16" x 3 1/2" . Mine never fits in a 9 x 13 pan. It's one of my favorite pans and I have more than one because it is also perfect for my cinnamon rolls and big batches of pulled pork or beef or a big brisket.
For my lasagna, I use a homemade spaghetti sauce, but you can use any sauce. When I make lasagna, I cook up a pound of mild Italian pork sausage with the ground beef and mix that in with the spaghetti sauce. I can't even give you exact amounts for the ground beef with spaghetti sauce. I just warm up a big pan of it. I'm feeding cowboys here so I make it pretty meaty. :) So the following is really just an estimate. I have our meat processed very lean and can't remember the last time I had to drain it.
2-3# ground beef
1# Pork sausage
3 large cans spaghetti sauce
- if you don't make your own spaghetti sauce you can just use any old sauce. I happen to have given all of my homemade sauce to college girl the last time she was home so I just grabbed the least expensive sauce this time around.
I've used this before and honestly, it makes an amazing lasagna. And it's only .89 cents a can. Lasagna is an expensive dish to make, so .89 cents makes me pretty happy.
I mix the following 5 ingredients in a large bowl:
48 oz cottage cheese
15 oz Ricotta Cheese
4 Tbsp Parsley
1 C Parmesan Cheese
16 oz Mozzarella Cheese
12 slices Provolone Cheese
1 16 oz box of Lasagna noodles
I put a baking dish in the sink and fill it with warm water and throw the noodles in it for 3 or 4 minutes as I"m assembling the lasagna. No need to boil the noodles and I just use regular noodles.
I add a few spoonfuls of meat sauce to the bottom of the pan and then layer lasagna noodles. Then I add a layer of Provolone cheese - about 8-12 slices for the pan I use - it used to be 8, but I think the cheese is shrinking. Next, I layer 1/2 of the cottage cheese mixture, 1/3 of the Mozzarella, a second layer of noodles, meat sauce, cottage cheese mixture, Mozzarella, noodles, meat sauce, Mozzarella. Bake at 400° for about 1 hour and 30 minutes. I don't cover mine because it seems to bake up nicer uncovered.
The boys love Lasagna day, but this makes a really big batch and there are leftovers so I called up the neighbors and told them supper was on me. This'll probably feed about 20...especially if you're saving room for Auntie's Chocolate Cake! :)