Thursday, June 18, 2009

Turkey Lasagna

I made Ina’s Ciabatta Garlic Bread, and wanted a lasagna dish to pair it with. My friend Naomi’s husband was out of town for business, and she recently went back to work (with a new baby at home), so I thought making dinner for her would be helpful, and it’d give us some girl time too. I know she loves lasagna, so I made her this recipe and paired it with some homemade garlic bread. To top off the evening, I also made a Summer Berry Pie, since she hearts fruit pies. I was a little skeptical about using goat cheese since I normally don’t care for it, but it imparted a great flavor and I won’t make it next time without it! Next time, I will use hot sausage to “spice” it up with a little heat (as I did add a dash of crushed red pepper), and try using no-boil lasagna noodles. This lasagna is not only delicious and flavorful, it is very easy to make. The lasagna was one of the best lasagnas I’ve ever had. It is packed with flavor, and overall, absolutely delicious.

2 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion (1 onion)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1-1/2 pounds sweet Italian turkey sausage, casings removed (I used Honeysuckle, but next time will use hot turkey sausage)*
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes in tomato puree
1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, divided
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
2 tsp kosher salt, divided (Omitted, since the cheese and meat impart salt)
3/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided
Dash of crushed red pepper (I added this since I wanted a little heat)
½-lb lasagna noodles (I used 8 lasagna noodles, 4 noodles per layer)
15 ounces ricotta cheese
3-4 ounces creamy goat cheese, crumbled
1 cup grated Parmesan, plus 1/4 cup for sprinkling
1 extra-large egg, lightly beaten
1 pound fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced (I used shredded mozzarella cheese)

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Heat the olive oil in a large (10 to 12-inch) skillet or dutch oven. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes over medium-low heat, until translucent.

3. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.

4. Add the sausage and cook over medium-low heat, breaking it up with a fork, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until no longer pink.

5. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, 2 Tbsp parsley, the basil, 1-1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, and crushed red pepper. Simmer, uncovered, over medium-low heat, for 15 to 20 minutes, until thickened.

6. Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with the hottest tap water. Add the noodles and allow them to sit in the water for 20 minutes. Drain.

7. In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta, goat cheese, 1 cup of Parmesan, the egg, the remaining 2 Tbsp parsley, remaining 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper. Set aside.

8. Ladle 1/3 of the sauce into a 9 by 12 by 2-inch rectangular baking dish, spreading the sauce over the bottom of the dish.
9. Then add the layers as follows: half the pasta, half the mozzarella, half the ricotta, and one 1/3 of the sauce.
10. Add the rest of the pasta, mozzarella, ricotta, and finally, sauce.
11. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup of Parmesan. Bake for 30 minutes, until the sauce is bubbling.

Source: Barefoot Contessa Family Style


Joelen said...

Looks fantastic and I love lasgana!

Naomi said...

As I told you the other night, I used to think my mom made the best lasagna but you really out did yourself! It was INCREDIBLE! I debated whether or not to let any leftovers for David but I decided that it's too good not to share. Thanks again!!

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