I haven't cooked anything in a while...sometimes I just have those weeks. So tonight I wanted to get back into the kitchen and make something delicious. I pulled out a recipe I photocopied from my friend's Moosewood cookbook for a super simple lasagna. I made this dish as is, but I have some ideas for doctoring it up later on. Maybe a vegetable lasagna with a cheese sauce....or adding some spinach into the mix. If you feel so inclined, adding meat or using a meat-based sauce would be an option as well. But even on its own, you get a cheesy, hearty, awesome meal in a snap!
1 regular-sized jar of tomato sauce (I used tomato basil but any variation will do, and use your own discretion as to how much sauce you want in the lasagna when you buy your jar of sauce)
12 lasagna noodles, half cooked or uncooked*
2 cups ricotta cheese or cottage cheese
1 lb grated or sliced mozzarella
1/2 cup (or more!) of parmesan, romano, or asiago cheese
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Spread a little of the tomato sauce on the bottom of a 9x13 pan. Cover the sauce with a single layer of noodles (about 4) breaking them as necessary to fit into the bottom of the pan. Using 1 cup of ricotta/cottage cheese, dot the top of the noodles with spoonfuls of the cheese.
Then you get to layering! Layer your ingredients in the following order: a third of your sauce (about 3/4 of a cup), 1/2 of your mozzarella cheese, another 4 noodles on top, the remaining ricotta cheese, another third of your sauce, the rest of your mozzarella, the last of the noodles, and the last of your sauce! Top the entire dish with the parmesan/romano/asiago cheese. You get a layered masterpiece of cheesiness.
Bake for 45 minutes. Cover loosely with foil if the cheese is browning too fast toward the end. Let sit for 10 minutes before serving. Eat and enjoy!
*Food Tip: The recipe said that uncooked, regular noodles worked great in this dish. I'm lazy, so I took the recipe at its word and it worked! The noodles on the very top were a little al dente and chewy, which is perfect for me. The noodles in the lower layers were perfectly cooked. So rest assured that you can buy regular lasagna noodles and they'll work just as wonderfully as those no-boil ones!