May 20, 2012
Spinach & Sausage Lasagna
I don't know what it is about lasagna, but to me it's the perfect comfort food. Whether it's just a cold and snowy Vermont winter night, or I'm feeling a little down, or I'm just feeling like I wanna be over indulgent....lasagna always fits the bill.
One of the things I love about lasagna is that you can add so many different things to it to make it different. I love adding veggies to it, not necessarily to make it a "veggie lasagna", but just to give it another dimension and to make it a more well rounded one dish meal. The possibilities are endless - carrots, zucchini, squash, etc. Just saute it up with onion and garlic and layer it on top of your cheese layers....YUM!
This recipe is one that all three of us equally enjoy....even my 13 year old son. It's really that good! Today I used no boil noodles for the first time. I always wanted to try them to see if it really works and to see how the end result would turn out. I was delighted to discover that I actually like these no boil noodles better! They are thinner which I liked very much...it didn't feel so "heavy" for lack of a better description. My husband agreed 100% - I think we are officially converted and will never go back to those other kind of noodles! ☺
Spinach & Sausage Lasagna
9 oz package of no boil lasagna noodles
5-6 cups of your favorite tomato sauce
1/2 cup sauted sliced mushrooms
1 lb hot sausage (or sweet Italian), crumbled and cooked through
15 oz ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cups cottage cheese
1/2 Parmesan cheese, + some to sprinkle on top
2 packages sliced mozzarella cheese
1, 10 oz package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1 tsp chopped garlic
1 tsp Italian seasoning mix
1/8 tsp nutmeg
2 cups shredded mozzarella
Preheat oven to 375, and spray a 9 x 13 baking dish with cooking spray. Warm your sauce at medium heat, until hot. Add the sauted mushrooms and cooked sausage and let simmer on low heat for about 15 minutes, then remove from heat and set aside. In a large bowl add the ricotta cheese, cottage cheese, Parmesan cheese, garlic, spinach, Italian seasoning and nutmeg and stir until well combined.
Spoon about 1 cup+ of the sauce into the bottom of the baking dish (we like our lasagna extra saucy, so I might use a little more than a cup here, measurements here can be adjusted to your own preferences). Layer the no boil noodles over the sauce, leaving about a 1/2 inch space on all sides to allow for the noodles to expand while cooking. Layer on top of the noodles 1/2 of the cheese mixture and spread even to the sides of the dish, and top with the sliced mozzarella. Add another layer of noodles in the opposite direction of your first layer, then top with another 1 cup+ of sauce. Gently spread remaining cheese mixture over sauce, then add another layer of sliced mozzarella. Add the last layer of no boil noodles (again alternating the direction of the noodles), and spoon 1 cup+ of the remaining sauce over the noodles.
Sprinkle with the shredded mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil and bake for about 50 minutes in preheated oven. Remove the foil and continue baking until hot and bubbly, about another 15-25 minutes. Remove from oven and cover with foil, and let stand for 15 minutes before serving.