Saturday, February 13, 2010

No Bake Lasagna

photo by Emily Hale

Here is my version of a 30 minute meal by Rachael Ray. She calls it Not-sagna pasta toss, I really dislike that name. My version is simpler and cheesier. She also stirs everything together, making an unpleasant looking mess in a bowl. I prefer it as pictured. I really appreciate Rachael's idea and method.
Jon loves lasagna, and he enjoys this almost as much. I get the ricotta at a discount grocery store, and while most chefs would be horrified by this, I think the meal is extremely tasty without the high end ingredients.
Picky eaters might enjoy the creamy noodles without the tomato and meat sauce.

No Bake Lasagna

1 lb pasta (rigatoni or campanelli work well)
1 lb ground beef
1/4 C finely chopped onion, optional
1 pressed garlic clove, optional
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp basil or italian seasoning
1/4 C red wine (for cooking is fine)
1/2 C beef stock
1 jar spaghetti sauce
1 1/2 C ricotta cheese
1/2 C shredded parmesan cheese
1 c mozzarella cheese plus more for top (but who really measures cheese?)

Cook noodles in a large pot of salted, boiling water. Before draining, reserve about 1/4 cup of the water.
Cook the ground beef until almost brown, adding onion and garlic if using, season with salt, and drain off fat. Add worcestershire sauce and herbs, and cook a minute. Add wine and let cook off a little, then add beef stock and spaghetti sauce.
Drain noodles, and add the reserved liquid (about 1/4 cup of salty water) back to the pan. Add ricotta cheese and mix well. Add the noodles, and other cheeses and combine. Serve meat sauce on top of creamy noodles in deep bowls. Top with extra mozzarella.

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