Jan 18, 2013


My mother makes the best lasagna!  Whenever I ordered lasagna at a restaurant, it was never as good as my mom made.  I found out it was her sister Elinor's recipe.  My youngest brother Paul was born when I was 11 years old.  Aunt Elinor and her daughter Pat came to stay with my brothers and I when my mother was in the hospital.  I had the best time with them.  I always wanted a sister and my cousin Pat felt like a sister to me.  We went to Expo 67, the world's fair which was held where we lived, in Montreal.  Needless to say, I loved my Aunt Elinor and my cousin Pat.  Aunt Elinor came to visit  us on occasion.  She lived far away in Winnipeg, Manitoba.  I would wake up in the morning and walk downstairs. I would hear my mom and Aunt Elinor talking and their voices sounded so much alike that I couldn't tell them apart!  Aunt Elinor was just like my mom ♥
 I made this lasagna as a newlywed, and have passed the recipe on to my children. When my five oldest children were married, I compiled all of our family favorite recipes into a recipe book for them.
I am going to share our lasagna recipe with you.

These are the ingredients for the meat portion of the recipe.

 Cook a 1 lb. of lean ground beef.

Add a 14 oz. can of diced tomatoes.

Add a 6 oz. can of tomato paste.

Add 1 T. dried basil.  Stir and sautee until the liquid evaporates and the sauce is thick.

These are the ingredients for the cheese mixture.

Slightly beat 2 eggs.

To the beaten eggs, add 3 cups of cottage cheese, l/2 cup grated parmesan, 2 T. dried parsley, 1 t. salt, 1 t. pepper and stir.

Add water to a pasta pot and bring to a boil.
I always add a couple of tablespoons of oil to the water to prevent the pasta from sticking together.

While I'm waiting for the water to boil, I lay the uncooked lasagna noodles in the 9 X 13 pan to see how they will fit, and how many noodles I will need.  The noodles will be layered in the pan twice.

When the water is boiling, I add the lasagna noodles, a few at a time.

The noodles are really stiff, so I wait for them to bend before I add more to the pot.  I put the noodles in the pot at different angles.

The noodles relax once they have been in the boiling water for a few minutes.  I cook them for about 10 minutes.  I definately don't want the noodles too soft, I like them soft but a little firm.  Remember, they will cook some more in the oven.

When the noodles are cooked to the desired consistency, I dump them into a colander and run some cold water over them so they don't stick together.

I spray the pan with Pam so that the lasagna won't stick and can be easily removed when it is time to be served.

I lay the cooked lasagna noodles in the pan.

Spoon half of the cheese mixture onto the noodles.

Then drop the meat mixture by spoonfuls onto the cheese mixture.

Lay the second layer of noodles over the cheese and meat mixtures.  The noodle that is on the end is on the opposite side of the first layer of noodles.

Layer the cheese and meat mixtures again and cover the lasagna with shredded mozarella cheese.  I add a lot because I like it chewy in the center and crisp on the edges.

I spray the underside of a piece of foil with Pam.  The lasagna cooks covered with a layer of foil, for 30 minutes.  After that amount of time, I remove the lasagna from the oven, take the foil off and cook the lasagna in the oven for an additional 15 minutes until it is golden in color.  I never used to spray the foil with Pam, but the cheese would stick to the foil and so much of it was wasted.

Cover the lasagna with the foil sprayed with Pam and cook in a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes.

This is what the lasagna looks like after 30 minutes of baking in the oven.  Remove the foil and return it to the oven for another 15 minutes.

This is what the lasagna looks like when it is ready to be eaten!

Doesn't the lasagna look delicious?
I forgot to show you the lasagna plated....whoops!
I always serve it with garlic bread and a salad.

At least I remembered to take a phot of the salad.
Romaine lettuce, grape tomatoes, parmesan cheese and a little bit of vinaigrette.

I hope you've enjoyed this photo tutorial of our family lasagna.
I hope you try it for your family.

Aunt Elinor's Lasagna

Meat Mixture:
1 lb. lean ground beef
1 T. granulated garlic
1 T. dry basil
l l/2 t. salt
2 cups canned tomatoes
6 oz. canned tomato paste

Cheese Mixture:
3 cups cottage cheese
l/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
2 T. dry parsley flakes
2 beaten eggs
1 t. salt
1 t. pepper

Noodles and shredded mozarella cheese

Brown meat, pour off fat and add other ingredients.
Cook noodles and drain.
Place half cooked noodles in 9 X 13 pan
Place half cheese mixture.
Place half meat mixture.
Noodles, cheese, meat and mozarella on top.
Cover with foil, and bake 30 minutes covered and 15 minutes uncovered in 375 degree oven.

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