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MARGHERITA’S LASAGNA WITH MILD PORK OR CHICKEN SAUSAGE

This is a rich and filling entrée. Served 9 family members and had leftovers!

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Instructions

  • 1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. Heat 1 Tbsp. of olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add sausage, breaking up the meat into bite-sized pieces with a wooden spoon. Cook meat until it loses it’s pink color, do not over cook. Remove meat to a plate and set aside.
  • 2. Add 2 Tbsp. olive oil to the same pan and add the anchovies and hot pepper flakes, breaking the anchovies up with a wooden spoon until they dissolve. Add garlic and sauté for about 1 minute, don’t let it burn. Add onion and carrot and tsp. of salt an sauté until vegetables are soft, about 15 minutes. Add thyme and tomatoes with some juice, breaking up the tomatoes with a wooden spoon. Place the sausage back in and cook on low heat until liquid is reduced, about 30 minutes. It should have the consistency of oat meal.
  • 3. If using the boil type of lasagna noodles, boil the noodles for 4 minutes and place on paper towels to eliminate excess moisture. Spray a large 10” x 13” baking dish with olive oil spray. Grate the pecorino cheese, tear the basil, slice the mozzarella and have all the lasagna ingredients at hand, before starting the layering process. Place a small amount of sauce on the bottom of the baking dish. You don’t need to cover it, as the sauce all goes to the bottom when baking. Sprinkle some meat and basil over the sauce. Then place a layer of pasta over it. Make sure to be generous with the pasta, break up pieces if necessary, to cover the bottom, you may have pasta leftover. Spread a generous layer of ricotta, then pieces of mozzarella cheese. You won’t have enough mozzarella to make a whole layer, so dot it around as evenly as possible. Add a little salt & pepper to the cheese for flavor. Sprinkle with pecorino cheese and spoon some sauce over the cheese and start the layering process again, adding a little more sauce to each layer as you go up in layers. The last layer should be sauce, meat & basil. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle more pecorino on top.
  • 4. Cover with foil and bake at 375 degrees for 40-45 minutes (45 minutes for the no boil pasta). After 30 minutes, check to make sure it’s not too watery. If so, remove the foil and bake uncovered for 10-15 minutes. Let stand for at least 20 minutes uncovered, before serving. Can leave out longer, up to an hour, before it will get too cold to serve.

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