I know this takes a little time to prepare, but after the mountain of dirty dishes and the sore feet, you can sit down to a delicious dinner, and think Yes! It was worth it! I don't make homemade lasagna very often (I like Stouffers frozen meat lasagna!), but when a recipe claims to be the best I have to try it, and I can honestly say this is the best homemade lasagna recipe I've ever tried. Very meaty and cheesy, and if you're going to make this for a dinner with family or friends, I would highly recommend preparing it the day before and refrigerating it until ready to bake the next day, that way you won't have all of those dishes to do right before company comes.
The Best Lasagna
1 lb. lean ground beef or ground turkey
1 pound hot breakfast sausage (I always use the Jimmy Dean that comes in the 1 lb. tube)
2 cloves minced garlic
2 14.5 oz. cans whole tomatoes
2 6 oz. cans tomato paste
1/3 c. chopped fresh flat leaf Italian parsley
1/3 c. chopped fresh basil
1 tsp salt
8 lasagna noodles
1 Tbs olive oil
3 c. lowfat cottage cheese
2 beaten eggs
2 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tsp salt
1 lb. sliced mozzarella (You can shred your own but sliced is so much more convenient! I would not recommend using the pre-shredded kind)
In a skillet combine the beef, sausage, and garlic cloves. Cook until brown, draining off half the fat. Pour in cans of whole tomatoes (with juice) and tomato paste, parsley, basil, and salt. Mix together thoroughly and simmer, uncovered.
In the meantime, boil lasagna noodles. Add 1/2 tsp salt and 1 Tbs. olive oil to water. Cook the noodles "al dente" (I cooked mine for 8 minutes). When noodles are finished, drain, rinse with cool water, and lay flat on aluminum foil.
Mix together cottage cheese, eggs, 1/2 c. parmesan cheese, and 2 Tbs. parsley and 1/2 tsp salt.
Preheat oven to 350.
Set up your "assembly" line: meat mixture, 1 lb. sliced mozzarella, cottage cheese mixture, and lasagna noodles. Spray a 9X13 pan with cooking spray.
Place four noodles on bottom, overlapping edges. Spread half of cottage cheese mixture over noodles. Place 1/2 lb. of mozzarella cheese slices over that, overlapping if you need to. Spread a little less than half of the meat mixture over the mozzarella and then repeat; noodles, cottage cheese mixture, mozzarella, and meat. Sprinkle parmesan cheese generously over the top and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes.
I served this with my homemade breadstick recipe, I think I posted it on this site last year around May or June.