September 10, 2019
So many meals can begin with a pound of ground beef—lean ground chuck is versatile enough to use for backyard burgers, a pot of chilli, sloppy Joes or kofta on the grill. It’s also perfect for a classic beef lasagna; add chopped peppers, zucchini, mushrooms or spinach, if you like, or toss some fresh basil leaves between the layers along with the ricotta, which you can spoon straight from the container to the baking dish.
This classic beef and cheese lasagna may just become your go-to for ease and versatility. And there’s no need to pre-boil the noodles—they’ll cook to ideal tenderness with the liquid of the sauce and the heat of the oven. Even if you don’t have a group of hungry people around the dinner table, leftovers freeze well, and can be divvied up into single-serving containers to pack for lunch all week.
Simple Beef Lasagna
olive or canola oil, for cooking
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 lb lean ground chuck
salt and pepper, to taste
2 650 mL jars Co-op Gold tomato sauce (any variety)
12 Co-op Gold lasagna noodles
1 container ricotta
3 cups grated mozzarella
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a large, heavy skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat and sauté the onion until soft. Add the garlic and cook for another minute, then add the beef and cook, breaking the meat up with a spoon, until it's no longer pink. Season with salt and pepper, add the tomato sauce and simmer for a few minutes.
Spread about 1 cup of the sauce in the bottom of a 9x13-inch or lasagna pan. Top with a layer of uncooked lasagna noodles, about a third of the sauce, half the ricotta cheese (dropped in spoonfuls over the sauce) and a handful of mozzarella. Repeat with lasagna noodles, sauce, ricotta and cheeses. Top with a third layer of noodles, sauce, and the remaining mozzarella along with the Parmesan.
Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes, then uncover and bake for an additional 30 minutes, until bubbly and golden. Let sit for at least 15 minutes before slicing.
- Julie Van Rosendaal
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