World's Best Lasagna
It takes a little work, but it is worth it.
- Serves: 12 persons
- 1pound sweet Italian sausage
- ¾pound lean ground beef
- ½cup minced onion
- 2cloves garlic, crushed
- 1(28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 2(6 ounce) cans tomato paste
- 2(6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
- ½cup water
- 2tablespoons white sugar
- 1½ teaspoons dried basil leaves
- ½teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1½ teaspoons salt, divided, or to taste
- ¼teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 12lasagna noodles
- 16ounces ricotta cheese
- ¾pound mozzarella cheese, sliced
- ¾cup grated Parmesan cheese
Step 1In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, 1 teaspoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
Step 2Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
Step 3Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
Step 4To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
Step 5Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.