Monday, August 24, 2009

White Lasagna

My friend, Susan, gave this recipe to me, and it was really yummy! It will become a regular in our house now. It was great the way I made it, but I think I would try a few modifications next time.... I will use regular lasagna noodles instead of the oven-ready, but make sure you don't cover it if you use regular noodles as it will turn out really soupy. I personally have trouble with oven-ready noodles drying out some. I did omit the mushrooms only because I don't like them, and I omitted the olive oil because I felt the sausage had enough fat in it that it didn't need it. Also, I would omit the butter and put the flour directly into the milk and chicken broth, to reduce the fat content some. I will write it just the way she gave to me because it was really great. These are just some options I thought would be good to try next time.

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil (optional)
2 1/2 pounds mild Italian sausage, removed from casing
1 pound button mushrooms, sliced (I left these out because I don't care for mushrooms)
4 Tbsp butter (optional)
4 Tbsp flour (I used whole wheat because she recommended it for more flavor)
2 cups milk
2 cups chicken stock or broth
1 box oven-ready lasagna noodles (or 12 regular noodles)
4 cups shredded Italian four-cheese blendDirections
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Place a large skillet over medium high heat with olive oil (optional). Add the sausage to pan and cook, breaking it up into small pieces with a spoon, until the meat is crumbled and golden brown, about 10 minutes. Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook until golden brown, 5-6 minutes, and set aside.

In the meantime, boil your lasagna noodles (if you aren't using oven-ready) according to the box instructions. Also, while the meat is browning, place a large saucepot over medium heat and melt the butter. Sprinkle the flour over the butter and mix. Whisk in the milk and chicken broth and bring to a bubble. Simmer until the sauce thickens, about 3-4 minutes.

Assemble the lasagna by ladling a small amount (about 1/2 cup, just eyeball it) of the sauce into the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Lay 3 of the lasagna noodles over the sauce, and top them with 1/3 of the meat mix. (I actually had 14 oven ready noodles, and they were much shorter than the pan was long, so I took the extra 2 noodles, broke them in half and laid a half on the end parallel to the 3 long noodles, alternating which side I did this for the 4 layers... I hope that makes sense.) Top with 1 cup of the sauce and about 1 cup of the shredded cheese (about 2 generous handfuls). Make 2 more layers of the lasagna by laying down 3 lasagna noodles, about 1/3 of the meat mixture, 1 cup of sauce and 1 cup of shredded cheese for each layer. Top the lasagna off with the last 3 noodles, the remaining sauce, and remaining shredded cheese.

Cover the pan with aluminum foil (if using oven-ready noodles) and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake another 15 minutes until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbly.

Hide your veggies! I think this would have been great with a small handful of fresh spinach, chopped and added to the sauce. The great thing about spinach is that it's loaded with lots of vitamins and when a small handful is added to a whole dish, and it's cooked, you normally can't even taste it in there. Also, a finely diced zucchini would be another good option to try. So yummy and healthy for you!

1 comment:

  1. Looks yummy! I'm glad I found your site! I'll be making note of your recipes. I have 5 kiddos and 2 have dairy, egg and peanut allergies. Always hard to find recipes! I've had to make up my own!