This is by far the most delicious lasagna I've ever eaten. And, to be honest, it's one of the few dishes that I wouldn't be able to cook without guidance from the lasagna master...but only because this is the first time he ever wrote down his secret recipe.
So here it is, in all it's cheesy, delicious glory...written down for the first time ever...
Parmesan Crusted Lasagna Bolognese
- 1 pound of ground beef, finely smashed
- 1 pound of Italian sausage, finely smashed
- 1½ sweet yellow onions, finely chopped
- 3 cloves of fresh pressed garlic (or 3 teaspoons in Jar)
- ½ to ¾ cups of semi-sweet red wine (I use Moscato)
- 1 large carrot, minced or pressed
- 1- 28 oz can of diced tomatoes
- 1- 12 oz can of stewed tomatoes
- 1- 6 oz can of tomato paste (for sweetness)
- 2 tablespoons dried basil
- 1 tablespoon of dried oregano
- 1½ tablespoons of parsley
- 1 pound of shredded mozzarella
- 15 oz tub of whole milk ricotta cheese (by the cottage cheese in grocery store)
- ½ pound of fresh parmesan triangle block cheese, grated fine
- 2 cups of spinach, chopped
- 1 egg
- Salt and pepper to taste
I used a Dutch oven for everything today. I’ve made this just as often with simple large saucepans. It’s up to you, although the hour and a half of sauce cook time is better maintained with cast iron.
- Warm the Dutch oven with 2 tablespoons of Olive Oil.
- Brown the sausage and burger in the Dutch oven over medium heat. Drain half of the grease and place meat in separate bowl when finished cooking.
- Sweat together the chopped onions and the freshly pressed garlic cloves in the emptied Dutch oven over medium heat (about 6-7 minutes)
- After the veggies are cooked in Dutch oven, deglaze by pouring in wine and bringing to a simmer. Reduce for about 7-11 minutes, depending on how much wine you prefer to use.
- Add meat back into Dutch oven mix. Add in basil, oregano, and parsley. Cook at low temperature allowing meats, veggies, and spices to become fragrant (about 6-10 minutes)
- Add in tomatoes. Salt and pepper to taste (I use about ¾ of a tablespoon of salt & 1 teaspoon of pepper). *Keep in mind the saltiness of cheeses.
- Add in the carrots (used to reduce acidity and add sweetness) and slow cook, low to medium-low, cover on, for 1½ hours, stirring occasionally
- *In the past I’ve added in brown sugar and 1/8 teaspoons of cinnamon at the end of this cooking time.
Ricotta (prepare near the end of sauce cooking time)
- Beat 1 large egg in a medium bowl
- Fold ricotta into the egg
- Mix the chopped spinach into the ricotta mixture
- Add in ¼ cup of grated parmesan. *Save the rest of the grated parmesan for the final layer
Layering, noodling, and Baking *
- When sauce is nearing the end, bring a large pot of water to boil, lightly salted, & preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Boil lasagna noodles (I use 10-12 lasgana noodles) & Cook very al dente (about 5 minutes)
- With an 8x11 inch casserole dish, spread thin layer of sauce on bottom to prevent noodles from sticking.
- Add noodle layer
- Spread 1/3 of ricotta mixture evenly on top of noodles.
- Spread 1/3 of sauce on top of ricotta.
- Spread 1/3 of mozzarella on top of sauce.
- Repeat layering until the top of pan is reached.
- With remaining parmesan, spread an even layer on top of top layer of mozzarella
- Bake uncovered, until parmesan is browned (40-50 minutes)
- Let rest on stove top for 10-15 minutes and enjoy!