Lasagna is made in so many different variations. But, my classic lasagna is the best you’ll ever taste. It is voted to be the best lasagna by family, friends and neighbors. Let me tell you the ingredients are so basic and it’s so easy to make anyone can do it. The sauce is made from scratch with ground meat, onions, garlic tomatoes and herbs. There is nothing that comes in a jar that can compare to this homemade sauce. Trust me when I tell you the sauce is so flavorful and its tangy deliciousness that you inhale with every breath you take while it’s simmering will have you looking forward to the first taste.
While the sauce is simmering, first I prepare the cheese and herbs mixture for layering the lasagna.
Then, I cook my lasagna noodles el dente where they are soft and pliable but not limp and soggy. You might be wondering if you can use no boil or oven ready lasagna noodles. Sure you can, but I have never used them. So I guess, you can say that I am an old fashion cook.
Once the sauce is done simmering, I assemble the lasagna in a deep baking dish by layering the noodles with the sauce and cheese mixture and bake it in the oven.
I know it’s hard to resist the gooeyness of the bubbling melted cheese as the lasagna comes out of the oven. But do let it cool for 15 minutes before slicing. Serve it with your favorite salad.
- 1-2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion finely chopped
- 3 large garlic cloves minced
- 2 stems fresh Italian basil or 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 pound ground round beef
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes with juice
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 12 lasagna noodles, cooked al dente
- 1 pound ricotta cheese
- ¾ cup grated parmesan cheese, divided
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- 8 ounces grated mozzarella cheese
- Over medium-high heat, in a large pot, heat olive oil. Sauté onion and garlic, stirring frequently until onion is soft and garlic is fragrant. Stir in basil, parsley, salt and pepper. Add ground beef and brown stirring to break any large lumps. Add whole peeled tomatoes with juice, tomato sauce, sugar (to reduce the acidity of the tomatoes) and bay leaf. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
- In a glass bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, ½ cup parmesan cheese and oregano.
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Remove and discard bay leaf from sauce.
- In a 9x13 baking dish, spread 1 cup of meat sauce. Arrange 4 noodles lengthwise and side by side over meat sauce. Spread ⅓ of the ricotta mixture over the noodles. Sprinkle ⅓ of the mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers and top with remaining ¼ cup parmesan cheese.
- You can freeze or refrigerate the lasagna for up to days or cover with aluminum foil and bake for immediately for 30 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before slicing.