Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Recipe of the Week 2011 #9: Lasagna with Turkey Sausage Bolognese

Lasagna is one of my favorite foods. It's hard to go wrong with cheese-layered pasta with a nice red sauce. I've made several over the years using various ingredient and cheese combinations, but I've never achieved lasagna nirvana-- until yesterday. The March 2011 Bon Appetit has an entire section on baked pastas, which I'm a total sucker for, and I've been working my way through them. I made a parsnip tortellini thingamawhatter last week that turned out okay (but not as good as I'd hoped). This recipe, however, made up for all the tortellini dish lacked. I liked it so much, I'm re-posting it (with the few alterations I made).

 Lasagna with Turkey Sausage Bolognese


Olive oil
1/2 cup dry, white wine
1 package no-boil lasagna noodles
2 28-oz cans crushed tomatoes in heavy puree
2 cups diced onions
minced garlic to taste
1 cup chopped fresh basil, OR four tablespoons dry basil, divided
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano, OR 1 tablespoon dry oregano
1 tablespoon fennel seeds
1 pound turkey sausages, spicy Italian style
2 large eggs
1 15-oz container ricotta cheese
4 cups mozzarella cheese, divided
1 1/2 cups parmesan cheese, divided


  1. Place noodles in a large bowl. Cover with hot water. Soak for 20-30 minutes, or until floppy. Drain.
  2. Heat oil over medium heat. Saute onions and fennel until soft.
  3. Remove casings from sausage. Add sausage and garlic. Saute until sausage is cooked through, breaking it up into small pieces.
  4. Add wine. Boil 1-3 minutes, or until alcohol has evaporated off.
  5. Add tomatoes, half of the basil, and oregano. Bring sauce to boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Allow the sauce to simmer until it thickens to desired consistency.
  6. In a large bowl, mix ricotta, three cups of mozzarella, one cup of parmesan, two eggs, and the rest of the basil. Divide into three portions.
  7. Assemble lasagna: in a 9x13" casserole dish, spread 1.5 cups of sauce on the bottom. Place four noodles on top of sauce. Carefully spoon one portion of ricotta mix onto noodles. Spread 1.5 cups sauce on top of the cheese mixture. Place four noodles on top of sauce. Repeat italicized instructions twice. Pour any remaining sauce on top of the last layer of noodles, then cover with leftover mozzarella and parmesan cheeses.
  8. Bake at 375F for 40-50 minutes, or until the cheese on top is bubbly. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

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