|Pictured here in gluten free version ~ served with my|
Sauéed Artichoke Hearts and gluten free garlic bread.
2 cups onion, minced
4-6 cloves garlic, minced
1 -- 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
2 -- 6 oz cans tomato paste
2 -- 6.5 oz cans tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
2 Tbsp white sugar
1 1/2 tsp dried basil leaves
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning (I heap the 1/2 tsp)
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
4 Tbsp chopped fresh Italian parsley (divided)
12 lasagna noodles - gluten free if necessary
15 oz ricotta cheese
3 shakes of salt
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
4-8 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (as desired)
My daughter, Carabeth, loves lasagna and this is her favorite lasagna recipe!
* Please note: If you need this to be a gluten free recipe and are new to this way of cooking, please read this entire post before you even go shopping for best results.
1. In a Dutch oven or large skillet with tall sides, cook 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, pepper, and 2 Tbsp parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
2. If using gluten free lasagna noodles, see my note at the bottom before proceeding. ~ Otherwise... Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8-10 minutes. Drain noodles and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
3. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 3 shakes of salt.
4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
5. To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups meat sauce in bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. (They will overlap.) Spread with 1/2 of the ricotta mixture. Top with 1/3 of the mozzarella and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan.
6. Repeat layers and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses.
7. Cover with foil. To prevent sticking: spray the underneath side of the foil with cooking spray before placing on top of lasagna. Place the casserole dish on a cookie sheet to prevent any spillage on the bottom of your oven.
8. Bake in a preheated oven for 25 minutes at 375 degrees. Remove foil and bake an additional 25 minutes. Let it rest for 15 minutes before serving.
* Note about Gluten Free Lasagna Noodles: If using gluten free lasagna noodles, I personally use and recommend DeBoles Rice No Boil Lasagna Noodles. I never liked the no boil before. In fact, I was not happy when I realized as I was preparing my lasagna and discovered that this was no boil, but I was pleasantly surprised. The texture is a bit like whole grain pasta when you first eat it and leftovers are more like regular texture. Either way, I really like it. I am definitely impressed that it is not grainy, sticky, or tough. ~ So, If you are using these, you can completely skip step two!
You will also need to pay attention to your other individual ingredients to make sure that they are all gluten free. Some brands may have hidden gluten in their shredded and/or graded cheeses, seasonings, and canned goods. These particular items are generally rather easy to find gluten free. Just educate yourself. I personally love my "Gluten-Free Grocery Shopping Guide", but you can also just search online to see if an item is gluten free.