In this classic meat lasagna, ground beef joins forces with ground veal for a spectacular taste sensation. The celery seed in the tomato sauce perks it up while the addition of cooked spinach lightens the entire dish. If you like, you can substitute pureed squash for the spinach. Simply boil or roast 4 cups cubed squash. When tender, puree in food processor. Season to taste with salt and pepper before adding to lasagna.
- 2 tbsp olive oil -
- 12 oz ground beef -
- 8 oz ground veal -
- 1 each onion, carrot, celery stalk, chopped -
- 4 cloves garlic, minced -
- 2 tsp each dried oregano and dried basil -
- 1 tsp salt -
- 1/4 tsp celery seed -
- Pinch each pepper and hot pepper flakes -
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar -
- 1 can (28 oz) tomatoes, chopped -
- 1 can (14 oz) tomato sauce -
- 2 bunches (10 oz each) baby spinach, trimmed and washed -
- 12 lasagna noodles -
1. In large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium high heat. Add beef and veal; cook, stirring often, for about 10 minutes or until beef and veal are no longer pink inside. Transfer to plate. Spoon off all but 2 tablespoons of oil. Add onion, carrots, celery and garlic; cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Stir in oregano, basil, salt, celery seed, pepper and hot pepper flakes. Stir in sugar. Add beef back to pot along with tomatoes and tomato sauce. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer gently for 30 minutes or until thickened.
2. Meanwhile, in very large pot of boiling salted water, cook lasagna noodles for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender but firm. Drain; chill under cold running water. Arrange in single layer on damp tea towel.
3. With water still clinging to leaves, cook spinach in skillet set over medium high heat for 3 minutes or until wilted. Drain well, squeezing out any excess water.
4. Preheat oven to 350F.
5. Spread 1-1/2 cups of meat sauce onto bottom of 13- x 9-inch baking dish. Layer with 3 lasagna noodles. Spread 2 cups of meat sauce evenly over noodles. Layer again with 3 noodles. Spread spinach evenly over noodles. Layer again with three noodles. Cover with 2 cups of meat sauce. Repeat noodle and meat sauce layers one more time. Cover top with remaining 1-1/2 cups of sauce.
6. Bake in centre of preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until bubbling and heated through. Let lasagna rest for 10 minutes before cutting into servings.