In our house, we love traditions that we’ve made our own – like going apple picking for our anniversary every year. Or getting a small Ollie-friendly sized Christmas tree during the holidays. Another one we’ve done for 5 years strong now is Valentine’s Day lasagna.
We don’t go out to eat for Valentine’s Day (not about supporting that commercialism), but every year I’ll make the fiance a lasagna. It’s one of his favorite things to eat, it’s simple and there is much love that goes into making it.
Ingredients for the sauce
1 lb grass fed ground beef
3/4 lb of spicy italian chicken sausage
1/2 cup of chopped onions
2 cloves of crushed garlic
1 lb of crushed tomatoes (I like the green Trader Joe’s can with basil)
8 oz tomato sauce
1.5 tbsp tomato paste
a handful of fresh chopped parsley
Ingredients for the ricotta cheese spread
16 oz of ricotta cheese
2 tsp salt
1 tbsp of parsley
Ingredients for the cheese layers and topping
12 oz bag of shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 lb of grated parmesan
And of course…
1 pack of lasagna noodles (how many you need will vary depending on your baking or casserole dish)
In a dutch oven, cook the onions and crushed garlic. Once softened, add the ground beef and chicken sausage. Once ingredients have browned, add in all the tomato ingredients. Make sure to drain the juice from the crushed tomato. Season with salt and pepper. Add fresh parsley.
Simmer for 30 minutes to 1.5 hours.
In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese, egg, salt and the rest of the parsley. Mix.
I bought no boil lasagna noodles, so at this point I can just hangout while the sauce simmers.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Now for my favorite part. Ladle in the tomato/meat sauce onto the bottom of your glass casserole dish.
Arrange one layer of noodles over the sauce.
Spread ricotta spread over the noodles evenly.
Repeat these steps until you’ve reached the top of the dish. Usually I do two layers. On your final noodle layer with ricotta, top with the shredded mozzarella and grated parmesan.
Cover your casserole dish in foil and bake for 25 minutes.
Take your dish out, take off foil and bake for another 25 minutes.
Let your beautiful lasagna sit for 15 minutes before cutting and serving.
This is a good recipe for any occasion where you want to let your loved one(s) know that they are very much loved. 🙂