Freitag, 15. Juli 2011

World's Best Lasagna

World's Best Lasagna Recipe


  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage
  • 3/4 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup minced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
  • 2 (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 12 lasagna noodles
  • 16 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  1. In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  4. To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Dienstag, 5. Juli 2011

Herb Roasted Chicken

Herb Roasted Chicken 

italian-herb-roasted-chicken-fb.jpg (325×325)
1 whole chicken, medium-sized (I used a 6 1/2 pound one)
1 cup margarine or butter (either softened or melted)
1/2 lemon
1/2 medium-sizen sweet Spanish or Vidalia onion
5 or 6 cloves of garlic or a tablespoon of powdered garlic parsley to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Rinse chicken inside and out and remove the guts. Tuck the wing ends under (under the underarms). Place on a roasting rack or triangle in a metal roasting pan. 
Take the seeds out of the lemon half and stuff it into the bird. 
Take the skin off the onion half and stuff it into the bird.
Remove the skin from the garlic cloves and, you guessed it, stuff into the bir d 
(if you're using garlic powder, just spoon it right into the cavity).
Mix the margarine or butter with the parsley. 
If the butter (or margarine) is soft, use a butter spreader. If it's melted, use a pastry brush. Either way, you want to coat the top of the bird with the mixture. Be sure to get under the wings and on the sides. You don't need to flip the bird over to get the bottom.
Place in the oven.
Cook at 400 degrees F for 20 minutes.
Reduce heat to 350 degrees F and cook 15 - 20 minutes per pound. I cooked the 6 1/2 pound bird for about 2 hours at this temperature. When one hour of cooking time remains, rotate the roasting pan 180 degrees for more even cooking. 
For the last hour or so, check the bird every fifteen minutes. If it has a self-timer, use that as your gauge for when the chicken is done. If not, use an instant-read thermometer or do the 'handshake' test (e. g. try to 'shake hands' with one of the legs. The leg should pull away freely if the bird is cooked). Also, cut deeply into the breast and make sure the meat is white all the way through. If it's pink anywhere, keep the bird in for another 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven and wait about 10 minutes before carving.
Side dishes can be anything; usually potatoes or rice plus some sort of green vegetable.
The pan drippings, mixed with flour, make an excellent (although fatty) gravy.
Vary the spices if you wish. I didn't use any salt and pepper (the margarine I use has a little salt, as do many brands of butter). The original recipe calls for fresh thyme and parsley to be stuffed into the bird. You could also vary the citrus and instead go with an orange (probably an orange quarter, given the standard size of this fruit) if you want a sweeter meal. I suppose you could also use shallots instead of onion.