Creating memories in the kitchen...One meal at a time.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Paula Deen's Lot's O' Meat Lasagna

In case you haven't noticed, and not  intentionally, I've been on a kick lately. Trying to find some good old-fashioned, basic, go-to recipes. I love trying new recipes and different versions of our families favorites, but in the hustle and bustle of everyday life, it's so nice to have a recipe you know you can depend on to give you great results every time. My latest quest ?Lasagna.

I have a few lasagna recipes I really like. The Pioneer Woman's recipe, this amazing version that I usually save for company or special occasions, and this fun mexican version. Although they are all delicious in different ways, I was still on the lookout for something new.

Then as luck would have it, when my friend Andrea and I were planning what to feed our boy's soccer team and some of their families at an upcoming tournament, she suggested a lasagna recipe her brother had e-mailed her. After reading over the ingredients, I had a feeling it was going to be good.

After tasting it, I had to agree, it was delicious. I loved the combination of both ground beef and sausage. The addition of ricotta as well as cottage cheese ? Let's just say it totally makes the lasagna. The soccer boys and their families devoured it. It's a keeper.

Lots O'Meat Lasagna

  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef (the original recipe calls for ground chuck so do whatever you like best)
  • 1 pound ground Italian sausage
  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano *we don't like chunks of tomatoes so I puree this. Sometimes I add a little more if the sauce looks too dry)
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans tomato sauce
  • 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 1/2 cups small curd cottage cheese
  • 1 16 oz. container ricotta cheese
  • 1 (5-ounce) package grated Parmigianno-Reggiano
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley leaves
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 9-12 oven-ready lasagna noodles (Barilla is my favorite. see cooks note at bottom)
  • 2 (8-ounce) packages shredded mozzarella *


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large saucepan, combine ground chuck, sausage onion and garlic. Cook over medium heat until meat is browned and crumbled; drain.
Return meat to pan and add oregano, basil, salt and pepper. If desired, puree tomatoes in food processor. Add tomatoes or tomato puree, tomato sauce and paste. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 30 to 45 minutes.( If the sauce looks too dry, I add a little more of the tomato puree.)
In a small bowl, combine cottage cheese,ricotta, Parmesan, parsley, and eggs.
Spoon 1/4 of sauce into bottom of a 13 by 9 by 2-inch baking pan. Place 3 uncooked lasagna noodles on top of sauce. Do not overlap noodles. Spread 1/3 of cottage cheese mixture over noodles, top with 1/4 of sauce and 1/3 mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers, ending with sauce, reserving 1/3 of mozzarella cheese.
Bake 45 minutes, covered in foil. Remove foil, top with remaining cheese and bake 15 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.
**Cooks Notes 

If you use Barilla brand of oven ready lasagna noodles, you will need to use 12 noodles because they are fatter and shorter. When I halved the recipe for 8x8 pan I used about 6 noodles.

I  never use pre-grated cheese. They use a substance on it to keep it from clumping which keeps it from melting as nicely as freshly grated cheese.

Recipe Source: adapted from Paula Deen
Posted by: Sallie

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