Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Dorcas Annette Walker
We never had Italian dishes at home while I was growing up so it wasn’t until I was married and in my own kitchen that I began experimenting with different styles of food. After becoming comfortable making spaghetti, I ventured into the field of lasagna. Throughout the years I have tweaked my lasagna recipe as I sampled other cook’s versions and discussed different methods of making lasagna to what I now call my Lasagna Supreme dish. Mouth melting lasagna takes time to create, but the preparation is well worth the investment. A dreary rainy March day is a perfect occasion to schedule making a Lasagna Supreme.
Lasagna is a classic Italian dish consisting of alternate layers of pasta (wide flat or ruffled edged noodles), cheese, and tomato, meat, or vegetable sauce baked until bubbly and golden brown. England was the first to feature a lasagna recipe in a cookbook, even though the recipe does not mention meat. Richard II was noted for enjoying lasagna in the 14th century, although pasta faded from the British diet when potatoes arrived. Today there are recipes for lobster, Mexican, pumpkin, turkey, vegetarian, zucchini, eggplant, spinach, and chicken lasagna. So no matter what flavor you desire there is a lasagna dish to please everyone.
My Lasagna Supreme has melting cheese surrounded by chunks of meat in a zesty tomato sauce; a meat lover’s delight that can also be made in a Crockpot. Any leftovers can be frozen and heated up in the microwave for an instant meal on another day or taken to work as a filling lunch. Mix-match different meats and cheese for your own family’s style or add chopped veggies for a one-of-a-kind gourmet dish. Either way a Lasagna Supreme is sure to please the fussiest of taste buds. Preparation time for my Lasagna Supreme is about an hour and this recipe serves twelve.
1 (16 oz) box of lasagna
2 tb salt
2 tb cooking oil
2 lb hamburger
garlic & regular salt
1 (26 oz) jar of spaghetti sauce
1 pint of mild salsa
½ (24 oz) container cottage cheese
1 (12 oz) pkg mozzarella cheese
1 c parmesan cheese
4 oz pkg pepperoni
sliced black olives
In a large kettle fill with water, add salt, cooking oil, and bring to a boil. When boiling immerse the lasagna and cook for twenty-five minutes until tender stirring occasionally with a large spoon to keep the noodles from sticking together. Brown hamburger in an iron skillet sprinkling garlic, regular salt, and pepper. In a large saucepan bring spaghetti sauce, salsa, and cottage cheese to a boil and then add browned hamburger.
Spray a 10 x 14 baking dish with cooking spray. Layer lasagna to cover the bottom of the dish, then a layer of hamburger/spaghetti sauce, sprinkle parmesan cheese, pepperoni, and then mozzarella. Repeat until all the lasagna is used only using pepperoni slices every other layer. Finish with mozzarella cheese and garnish with sliced black olives. Bake at 350º for thirty minutes until the cheese is melted and slightly browned. Serve hot with garlic bread and a tossed salad!
Weekly tip: Always place casserole dishes on a large baking tray before baking in the oven to catch any run over’s!
Dorcas Annette Walker is a published author, columnist, speaker, freelance magazine writer, and photographer from Jamestown, Tennessee. Contact her at: firstname.lastname@example.org. For more recipes check out her Creative Tennessee Mountain Cookin blog at: www.dorcasannettewalker.webs.com