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FABULOUS LASAGNA

3 bls ground sirloin
1 3/4 lbs Italian sweet sausage (salsicca)
3 cartons ricotta
4 lbs mozzarella
1 lb romano
3 - 5 oz cartons shredded parmesan
Lasagna noodles to cover two large pans with 3 layers (no boil kind)
Bunch of parsley, cleaned, stemmed, well chopped
5 extra large eggs
Fresh and dried sweet basil and oregano
Olive oil
Garlic powder
3 -14.5 oz. cans diced tomatoes
2 - 64 oz jars Ragu sauce, original variety
8 large fresh mushrooms, sliced
4 large yellow onions (or enough to make 2+ cups finely chopped)
1 large red sweet pepper, chopped finely
Salt & Pepper

2 15" X 10 1/2 X 2" lasagna pans

Hardboil 4 eggs, cool and separate yokes from whites. Use a fork to mash up yokes until they are fine crumbs.

Using steel knife of food processor, pulse cubes of mozzarella until all 4 lbs form fairly fine crumbles. Do same with romano. Set both cheeses aside in separate containers.

Brown sirloin in large iron skillet; drain most of fat, then add chopped onions (reserving ˝ cup for sauce) along with red pepper and tomatoes, generous sprinkles of dried oregano, basil, salt & pepper. Cook, stirring well to keep from sticking, until beef is starting to get a crispy brown, and onions, pepper and tomatoes are soft and tender, and spices are aromatic.

Remove from skillet and set aside. Put ground Italian sausage into skillet and brown, stirring and mashing with fork to keep it from cooking in lumps. Fry until well browned in small crumbles. Drain fat. Use a large mixing bowl to combine meats thoroughly.

Beat one egg and stir into ricotta, then add chopped parsley, salt & pepper, stirring until well blended.

Heat two jars of Ragu in large sauce pan. Add garlic powder generously plus salt & pepper. Add fresh chopped basil and oregano, about 3-4 tbls of each, or to taste. Then add parmesan and stir under medium heat until cheese melts and sauce is aromatic. In empty iron skillet, add enough olive oil to barely cover bottom, then brown remainder of chopped onions and sliced mushrooms. When softened, add to sauce pot. Add a couple of scoops of meat mixture to slightly thicken sauce. Turn off heat.

Lightly cover bottom of both pans with sauce. Then lay enough uncooked lasagna noodles in bottom of each pan to cover it. Add half of meat mixture and all egg yokes, dividing between the two pans. Then add ricotta mixture same way. Sprinkle with enough mozzarella to cover well. Then sprinkle with dried oregano and basil.

Layer more noodles in each pan. Add rest of meat mixture. Then cover with mozzarella and sauce. Make sure sauce “seals” at sides of pan as its juice will “cook” noodles while baking. Layer more noodles in each pan. Cover with last of sauce and sprinkle with last of mozzarella and all of romano. Sprinkle dried basil and oregano over top.

Spray two pieces of tin foil with cooking spray and loosely cover pans. Bake at 350 for about one hour, checking after 40 min to see when noodles can be pierced with a fork. When noodles are soft, lasagna is done.

I usually bake one pan to serve around 10 hearty eaters and freeze the second pan for later. Or, if you're having a large party, bake both pans at once, switching them from top/bottom shelves of oven half way through baking process.

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