Dianne Pearson of Columbia was looking for a recipe for making meat lasagna without pre-boiling the noodles. Betsy Howells of Redmond, Ore., e-mailed her recipe for no-boil lasagna that she said is her "trouble- and mess-free method for making an Italian classic."
The dish comes together quickly, thanks to the use of bottled spaghetti sauce and the fact that you don't have to boil the noodles. It can be assembled in advance and refrigerated. The key is to use plenty of sauce and to cook it slowly at a low heat to allow the noodles to soften and the flavors to blend. Mine took almost 2 hours at 300 degrees. The recipe will serve a crowd and freezes well.
Serves 12 to 14
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
4 cups low-fat ricotta cheese
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 teaspoon nutmeg
3 teaspoons Italian seasoning (divided use)
1 pound lean ground beef
1 pound loose Italian sausage
two 1-quart jars spaghetti sauce (any flavor)
one 16-ounce package of curly lasagna noodles
1 1/2 cups shredded parmesan cheese
Combine mozzarella cheese, ricotta cheese, eggs, nutmeg and 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning. Set aside. Brown the ground beef and loose sausage, drain fat and set aside.
To assemble: In a large, deep, oblong pan, pour one-third of the first jar of pasta sauce into bottom of pan. Then put down a single layer of the uncooked pasta noodles, top with 1/4 of meat mixture, 1/2 to 3/4 cup of cheese/egg mixture and another one-third jar of pasta sauce. Be sure to coat each layer generously with pasta sauce.
Repeat the process until you have used up all the ingredients. You should get at least 4 layers ending with noodles on top. Pour remaining sauce over last layer of noodles until it pools slightly around the inside of the dish. Dress the top of the lasagna with the parmesan cheese and remaining Italian seasoning.
At this point, you can refrigerate the lasagna or bake it, covered with foil, at 300 degrees for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. If you like a crispy top, uncover the dish for the last 15 minutes of baking.
Per serving (based on 14 servings): 521 calories, 33 grams protein, 22 grams fat, 10 grams saturated fat, 49 grams carbohydrate, 5 grams fiber, 100 milligrams cholesterol, 1,217 milligrams sodium
John Klingkamer of Fife Lake, Mich., would like a good recipe for a five-star white chili.
Dorothy McMann of Baltimore is looking for a recipe from the 1950s for applesauce cake baked in an 8-by-8-inch pan. She said it was printed on the Ann Page applesauce jar.
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The nutritional analyses accompanying recipes in today's Taste section were calculated by registered dietitian Jodie Shield, except where noted.