Wednesday, January 16, 2013


Who doesn't love Lasagna? *Clears throat...gets all fidgety....Um...hmm...well...I didn't. I know, I know.... Crazy, right?? Yeah, for the longest times I hated ricotta cheese. The taste, the texture...who knows...It was in the beginning of my married life when I was just a youngin' and didn't know any better. I didn't like a lot of things then either...celery, fresh carrots, mushrooms, hummus, and the list goes on....I was a picky picky eater. Maybe it was because I grew up in a podunk town in the south where we had two itty bitty grocery stores which compared to a quick market up here in the city. It was before youtube and the Food Network when everyone got recipes from actual cookbooks. So our weekly meals consisted of a simple repertoire...usually repeated over and over and over....and over. Anyone been there? Or STILL there? Strangely enough though, I loved Thai food (probably because my Momma loves it..and we had a Thai restaurant there). Anyway, moving to the "Big City" certainly expanded my horizons as far as my taste palette goes. Also, I forced myself to try things I didn't like. Often. I still do to this day. I can't stand green olives, but every now and then I will try one to see if I like them yet. I'd encourage anyone to try that. If you're a grown person then every now and then try things you dislike and eventually you may end up loving them! It works on my kiddos too 
I remember when I first got married and we met a newly married couple who invited us over for dinner. And guess what she made? No, not lasagna. Stuffed Shells. And what are stuffed shells stuffed with? Yep, ricotta cheese. Well, since I was raised to be polite....I choked those babies down with a smile on my face and thanked my gracious hostess for inviting us for dinner (she happens to be one of my bffs still). LOL. 12 years later I LOVE ricotta cheese in my pasta. Who knew? Oh, and another Prince Charming's favorite meal is lasagna so the only time I would suffer through it was for his birthday. Poor thing...Okay, to end my long-winded back story that y'all may or may not be interested in...I finally learned to make lasagna..and now Prince Charming is one happy fella. So, without further's my recipe:


6 lasagna noodles, cooked al dente (not too soft but with a little crunch)
1 lb ground beef
salt and pepper, to taste
1 package fresh mushrooms (I prefer baby bellas) (optional)
1 zucchini (optional)
1 large onion, diced (1 cup)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large can crushed tomatoes
1 can diced tomatoes
1 6 oz. can tomato paste
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1 15 oz. container ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
3 Tablespoons dried parsley
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Alright, so first thing you do is brown the hamburger meat along with the onions. Add salt and pepper. 
2. Once the meat is half-way browned, add the zucchini and mushrooms, oregano, basil and minced garlic. When the vegetables are tender and the meat is mostly browned, drain the excess fat. 

Here's Princess9 helping me...isn't she cute? :)

3. Now add the crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Stir and bring to a boil. 

Once it reaches a boil reduce heat to a simmer for about 30 minutes. Put a lid on the pan but make sure it's not on completely in order to allow the sauce to vent the steam. Stir occasionally. 

4. While this is simmering, get the lasagna noodles ready. Put a pot of lightly salted water on the stove with a lid on (the salt and lid speed up the boiling process)

5. While you're waiting for the noodles, Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a medium bowl combine the ricotta, parsley, Parmesan, and beaten egg.

6. When the noodles are finished, drain and rinse. Layer 3 noodles in a 9x13 inch baking dish. Next, layer half of the ricotta mixture.

7. Spoon half of the sauce mixture over the ricotta layer. 

Repeat the layers: noodles, ricotta, and sauce.

Sprinkle with 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

And 1 1/2 cups mozzarella. 
8. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes.

Enjoy some really yummy lasagna!


  1. Hi Jenn! Hope you have wonderful day with the SITS sharing love. I get raves about my lasagna but it's funny that I never added egg to the ricotta cheese. It should be a lot easier to spread now:) Thanks, this looks delicious.

  2. Wishing you a Happy SITS Day! Your lasagna looks delicious! Enjoy your special day!

  3. Looking good (and to think, I don't even eat meat and I'm still saying this). Stopped in from SITS to wish you a fab day and a really wonderful weekend too. Blessings to you...

  4. As I was going to say on your blog before Disqus got all grumpy (and I cirumvented it by posting as my Twitter self), if it wasn't so freaky and 1st gradeish, I'd ask you to be my friend!!! Your bio could describe me.... except I was only a readhead in my late teens by choice... I've since resigned myself to the fact that I will always be a muddy blond! Ho Hum. However, I also only use tomatoes out a tin - all other stuff is fresh.

  5. Yummy! One of my favorite dishes! Hope you have a wonderful SITS Day!

  6. Color me terrible, but I still can't do ricotta! I have tried, though!

  7. I love lasagna. It's the one thing I will cook without complaining. Funny thing is that I never make it the same way twice. I think one of the keys to making a good lasagna is to get that ricotta mixture just the right texture. I hate it when it's too soupy! Thanks for sharing your recipe.


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