Wednesday, February 6, 2013

For the Foodies: Lasagna


8 ounces lean ground beef
1 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 16-ounce can low-sodium tomatoes, undrained and cut up
1 6-ounce can low-sodium tomato paste
1.5 teaspoons dried basil, crushed
1.5 teaspoons dried oregano, crushed
1 teaspoon fennel seed, crushed
9 packaged dried lasagna noodles
1 12-ounce carton low-fat cottage cheese, drained
1.5 cups shredded reduced-fat mozzarella cheese (6 ounces)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (1 ounce)
1 egg
2 tablespoons snipped fresh parsley

Step 1

In a saucepan cook beef, onion, and garlic until meet is brown. Drain off fat. Stir in undrained tomatoes, tomato paste, basil, oregano, fennel seed, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 15 minutes; stir occasionally.

Step 2

Meanwhile, cook lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain; rinse with cold water. Drain well.

Step 3

For filling, combine cottage cheese, 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese, the Parmesan cheese, egg, parsely, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Step 4

Layer one-third of the cooked noodles in a 2-quart rectangular baking dish, trimming ends to fit. Spread with half of the filling. Top with one-third of saunce. Repeat layers. Top with remaining noodles and sauce. Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella.

Step 5

Bake, uncovered, in a 375 degree oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until heated through. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving

281 callories, 8 g total fat (5 g saturated fat), 60 mg cholesterol, 491 mg sodium, 27 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 23 g protein.

The Lowdown

I am a fan of lasagna. In my mind, the lasagna was saved for special occasions. Maybe I thought it took too long to make or maybe because it seemed complicated. Whatever the reason, this dish was a cinch.

While making it, especially while layering the lasagna, I kept thinking I should have doubled the filling and meat sauce. While the first layer was fine, the second and third layers needed more of both. When my son and I dug in, we both agreed in unison, "More Filling!"

Nevertheless, the dish was tasty. I could smell and taste the herbs and spices. My favorite was the garlic. Probably not great for socializing up close, but it makes for a yummy dish.

I ended up cooking it for 35 minutes exactly, but could have cooked it for a little less time. The meat, cheese, and exposed noodles appeared a bit dry and touch. Fortunately, it didn't effect the final taste test.

As far as sides, something green would have been nice. Maybe some green beans or broccoli would do just right.

In the end, it was easy to make, tasty, and a hit within the house. I'm definitely adding this to my list of future recipes.


Source: Better Homes and Gardens New Dieter's Cookbook


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Damond L. Nollan, M.B.A.

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