Monday, September 21, 2009

Day 51: This United Lasagna

Day 51: This United Lasagna

Yield: 2 lasagnas
Time (Start to Finish): 1.5 hours

1 pound lasagna noodles

1 carton brown mushrooms (2 cups)
1 med yellow onion
2-3 cups green apples (peeled and cubed)
salt and pepper
4-5 cloves garlic
olive oil
1 cup basil
2 1 pound jars pasta sauce

4 cups ricotta cheese
2 pounds mozzarella cheese, grated
2-3 cups fresh spinach
parmesan cheese for grating on top

1. Preheat oven to 350F
2. Cook noodles in salted boiling water until cooked through but a little firm so you can move them. Place them aside but make sure they don’t stick together
3. In a big skillet pan, add chopped onion, apples, olive oil, salt and pepper and cook until tender.
4. Add the garlic and the mushrooms and cook just a little until the mushrooms are barely cooked
5. Add 1 jar of sauce and cook until it is not runny anymore, then add the chopped basil
6. In a separate bowl mix the ricotta, spinach and about 2 cups of the grated mozzarella until smooth
7. In 2 casserole dishes, place a little bit of the sauce on the bottom so the noodles wont stick.
8. Then add a layer of noodles
9. Add a layer of the ricotta cheese mixture (half of it)
10. Add a layer of the sauce
11. Add a layer of mozzarella cheese
12. Repeat by adding another layer of noodles, then the rest of the ricotta, sauce, mozzarella cheese, noodles, sauce.
13. If you need more sauce, there is the second jar. I used it for the last layer.
14. Make sure to end with mozzarella cheese. I made 3 layers of noodles.
15. Add parm cheese on top and bake in oven uncovered until cheese is melted and starts to brown
16. Let sit for at least 10 min before serving so it wont be runny, and serve with garlic bread

Rating: 4 strawberries
Notes: I made this dish for the lovely band These United States (link to their website at the bottom of this page). I know the name of my dish is cheesy, but so is my lasagna!! (and this joke) They stayed at my house and I wanted more than anything to make them feel at home and with no worries, so what better way then to fill the house with smells of garlic, onions, and cheese! The apple is my secret ingredient…well, Brent from years ago told me about the idea, and I now use apples in lots of things. Apples taste GREAT in things with tomato and for sure cut down the acidity and add a great sweetness and crunch! We scarfed this lasagna, and it fed about 9 people (most of them hungry boys) so if you are just making it at home, for sure cut the recipe in half. It freezes great, stores wonderfully in the fridge, and it really a classic recipe. I felt good filling the bands tummies and sending them off into the world. Nothing better than making people smile. Thanks guys! Oh, and thanks ninja girls for enjoying it too!

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