Friday, February 17, 2012

A Birthday Party In The Works

Good morning! I hope everyone had a good week and has plans for an enjoyable weekend. Our week was pretty much the same as usual, and the weekend is looking busy but fun.

Sunday is my husband’s birthday, so we’re having his birthday dinner tomorrow night. The house will be full (2 sons, daughter & son-in-law, 2 grandsons, mother-in-law and the 2 of us), and I’m looking forward to it!

Today will be baking and prep day, as well as cleaning and grocery shopping. I’ll be baking an Italian Cream Cake and chocolate cupcakes, making some salads, and getting ready for the main cooking tomorrow. The main entree is lasagne, which is one of his favorites. I found this recipe in a cookbook given to me as a shower gift before we were married, and have made it many times. I did, however, make some slight changes to make it “mine”. Give it a try – I know you’ll like it!

LASAGNE

1 lb. roll hot sausage
1 clove garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. whole basil
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 can (16 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (12 oz.) tomato paste
10 oz. lasagne or wide noodles
3 cups small-curd cottage cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. parsley flakes
2 eggs, beaten slightly
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 lb. thinly-sliced Mozzarella cheese

Brown sausage and drain off fat. Add next 5 ingredients. Simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Cook pasta as directed; drain and rinse.

Combine cottage cheese, Parmesan, parsley, eggs, salt and pepper.

Place half the pasta in 13x9x2” baking pan. Spread with half the cottage cheese mixture, then half the Mozzarella cheese, then half the meat sauce. Repeat layers, ending with meat sauce on top.

Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes, until hot and bubbly. Let stand at least 10 minutes before serving.

Makes 12 servings.

(Adapted from a recipe in The Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook.)

Many lasagne recipes use ground beef, but the sausage gives it a nice spicy flavor. And we like the cottage cheese rather than the typical Ricotta cheese because it isn’t as dry. Some recipes also recommend using shredded Mozzarella, which I think would probably work well, but I’ve always used the sliced.

So is it “lasagna” or “lasagne”? From some recent research I did, it seems the name for just a single piece of pasta would be “lasagna” and the plural name for many pieces in a dish would be “lasagne”. Either way, it’s delicious!

Have a wonderful day! As always, comments are welcome.

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