Lasagna Made With Slow-simmered Meat Sauce
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- 1 Tbsp
- olive oil, extra virgin
- 1 1/2 c
- yellow onions, chopped
- 1/2 c
- bell pepper, fine diced
- 3 tsp
- garlic, fine chopped (to taste)
- 1-2 dash(es)
- red pepper flakes
- 1/2 lb
- italian sausage, mild
- 1/2 lb
- ground pork
- 28 oz
- can crushed tomatoes
- 29 oz
- can tomato sauce
- 9 oz
- tomato paste (1 1/2 cans, 6 ounce size)
- 1 tsp
- basil, dried
- 1/2 tsp
- oregano, dried
- coarse salt and pepper to taste
- 3/4 c
- white wine, dry
- lasagna noodles, cooked (i used whole wheat)
- 28 oz
- cottage cheese, small curd
- egg, beaten
- 2 Tbsp
- parsley, chopped (1 tbl if using dried)
- 1 c
- grated parmesan cheese
- 5 c
- mozarella cheese, shredded
FOR THE SAUCE
1. In a large Dutch oven, heat olive oil until hot; add the chopped onions and chopped bell pepper and cook until softened, about 8 minutes or so.
2. Add the minced garlic and red pepper flakes and cook and stir for about 1 minute more.
3. Crumble the Italian sausage and ground pork over the onion mixture; chop and cook until the meat is no longer pink and is in small pieces.
4. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, dried basil, dried oregano and season with salt and pepper. Stir to thoroughly combine, taste and add more salt and/or pepper, as needed. Add the white wine and stir once more.
5. Bring the sauce to a boil; reduce the heat and simmer, covered (lid propped with small opening) for about 5 hours. Check the sauce and stir occasionally.
NOTE: The sauce is fairly thick and will shoot up hot "bubbles" after stirring; use care. (I remove it from the heat when stirring.)
TO ASSEMBLE LASAGNA:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook lasagna noodles per package instruction; drain and rinse with cold water and lay aside.
2. Place the cottage cheese in a medium bowl; add the beaten egg and fresh or dried parley and stir to combine.
3. Using a 9 x 13 inch pan, spread a thin layer of meat sauce on the bottom. Lay 4 noodles (mine overlapped slightly) across long side of pan and 1 across the short side of pan at the bottom of other noodles (I cut about a two-inch piece off this noodle).
4. Cover noodles with a layer of meat sauce, spreading gently to cover; next "dollop" 1/2 of the cottage cheese mixture, spreading to cover meat sauce. Add a layer of mozzarella (about 1 1/2 cups), then sprinkle liberally with parmesan cheese.
5. Repeat the layer as above 1 more time, then finish with the rest of noodles, meat sauce, mozarella and parmesan.
NOTE: I used almost all the meat sauce made, having only about 1 cup left.
6. Cover the pan with foil and cook in preheated oven for about 30 minutes.
TIP: Spray the foil with cooking spray and it won't stick to the cheese.
7. Remove the foil and cook an additional 30 minutes, or until the cheese is just beginning to brown. Let cool for about 15 minutes before cutting into servings.