#Caturday: Fatwa-worthy bacon lasagna

by 1389 on June 15, 2013

in 1389 (blog admin), Caturday, gluttony, humor, recipes

Note: This is an “old-school” improv-style recipe, created by experimentation in my kitchenette. Proportions and measurements are not exact, nor do they need to be.

Garfield, what would you like for dinner?

Ingredients:

1 package bacon
1 package hot Italian sausages (remove skins, or buy skinless Italian sausage meat)
1 large can diced tomatoes, including the juice (about 28 oz.)
1 medium size can mushroom pieces (roughly 12 to 16 oz.)
1 medium size can tomato paste (12 oz.)
1 12-oz. can beer
1 tablespoon basil
1 tablespoon oregano
1 tablespoon (or more) onion flakes
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 package lasagna noodles
1 package mozzarella cheese
8 oz. container ricotta cheese
Glass baking dish, preferably square or rectangular because the noodles will fit better.
(You can even use a glass loaf pan.)

The sauce:

Brown the sausage meat in a frying pan, drain, and set aside.

Fry the bacon until it is nearly done but NOT crisp. Drain the bacon, cut the bacon strips into 1 to 2 inch lengths, and set aside.

Bring the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, mushrooms, beer, and seasonings to boil in a large pan. Turn the heat down and add the browned sausage meat and the bacon. Stir to make sure it doesn’t burn. Simmer the sauce until flavors are somewhat blended – 15 minutes should suffice.

The noodles:

In a large pot, boil enough lasagna noodles to provide for 2 layers of noodles in the baking dish that you will be using. If you plan to use a deep baking dish (such as a loaf pan), boil enough noodles to make 3 layers.

Boil noodles only until they are very slightly flexible. Then drain IMMEDIATELY. Do NOT cook noodles any longer than that or they will become mushy when baked.

Assembling the lasagna:

Cover the bottom of the pan with one layer of lasagna noodles.

Add a layer of sauce.

Add a layer of ricotta cheese.

Scatter pieces of mozzarella cheese over the ricotta layer.

Add another layer of lasagna noodles.

Add another thick layer of sauce.

If you are using a fairly deep baking dish (or a loaf pan), you will still have some room in the baking dish. In that case, add one more layer of noodles and top it with another thick layer of sauce.

Note: Don’t worry if you have sauce or cheese left over. You can freeze leftover sauce in a freezer bag for future use. If you have leftover mozzarella and ricotta, you can save it for next time or use it to stuff large pasta shells.

Baking:

Microwave the lasagna for 25 minutes or so, depending on the size and shape of your baking dish. Watch it toward the end to make sure that the sauce on the top does not scorch. If the lasagna doesn’t look done, give it a few more minutes.

When it is very nearly done, scatter some small pieces of mozzarella on top of the lasagna. Microwave 1-2 more minutes to melt the cheese. Then serve.

Variations, depending on what ingredients you have on hand:

  • If you have fresh onions on hand, you can chop up an onion, fry it in the bacon grease until soft, drain it, and add it to the sauce in place of the onion flakes.
  • You can mix some chives, and/or a whole egg, into the ricotta cheese.
Garfield scarfing lasagna

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