Tuesday, January 19, 2010


I cooked this delicious meaty and cheesy lasagna over the weekend. It was a perfect food for a rainy & cold San Francisco weather as the smell of the tomato sauce and the baked cheese totally warmed up my apartment. The original recipe that I got from my coworker (thank you, AMV!) required three pounds of ground meat but I decided to cut it in half since I added other ingredients like the ricotta cheese and extra vegetables into it. I also used the lasagna recipes at Closet Cooking and Simpy Recipes for inspiration.

1 medium onion, chopped
10 cloves of garlic, minced
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2 lb each of ground beef, ground pork and sweet Italian sausage
1 lb of Crimini mushrooms, sliced
2 cans of 28oz San Marzano tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 package of Barilla lasagna noodles
1/2 lb of grated Mozarella cheese
1 15 oz Ricotta cheese
2 cups of grated Parmesan cheese
2 eggs
1 teaspoon dry oregano
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes
2 teaspoon garlic powder
salt, sugar & pepper to taste

  • Saute the onion in olive oil in a deep sauce pan over a medium heat until browned, then add carrot, green bell pepper, garlic and the red chili pepper flakes and cook for another 10 minutes until all vegetables are soft. Set aside.
  • In the same pan, add another tablespoon of olive oil and saute the ground meat over medium high heat for 5 minutes or so until totally cooked. Set aside and drain off any excess oil from the meats.
  • Saute the sliced mushroom in the same pan with a sprinkle of garlic until cooked and then set aside.
  • For the Sauce: Return 3/4 of the vegetable mixture, 1/4 of the meat and 3/4 of the mushroom into the same pan and add the two cans of chopped tomatoes, dry oregano, cumin, cinnamon and half garlic powder. Add 1/4 cup of red wine and simmer the sauce for 60 to 90 minutes until it thickens. Add seasoning accordingly.
  • For the Meat Filling: In a large bowl, mix the rest of the vegetable mixture, meat, mushroom and seasoning with half of the grated Mozarella cheese. The cheese will melt and become stringy.
  • For Cheese Mixture: Mix the Ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese and the two eggs in a bowl
Assembling the Lasagna:
  • Preheat the oven to 350F.
  • If you are using Barilla lasagna noodles, you do not have to cook the pasta first. If not, cook the pasta according to the direction in the box.
  • Spread 1 cup of the tomato sauce over the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish.
  • Place 4 lasagna noodles on top, overlapping a little one top of the other.
  • Place 1/2 of the Ricotta cheese mixture on top and layer with 1/2 of the meat filling and 1/3 of the tomato sauce.
  • Add another layer of lasagna noodles on top and then repeat with the rest of the Ricotta cheese mixture and meat filling and another 1/3 of the tomato sauce.
  • Add another layer of lasagna noodles on top and top everything with the rest of the tomato sauce.
  • Cover (tent) the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in the oven for 50 minutes.
  • Take off the aluminum foil and add the remaining Mozarella cheese on top.
  • Return to oven uncovered for 10 minutes until the cheeses on top are melted and the edges are slightly browned.
  • Cool for 5 minutes before cutting.
  • If you have leftover meat mixture or sauce, you can always freeze and use them for pasta sauce in the future.


  1. What a beautiful looking lasagna!

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