Friday, March 20, 2020

Double Spinach Lasagna

Since we're now in a bit of a full-blown pandemic panic, I decided to use some of the items already in my pantry and what I could snatch off the bare shelves of the grocery store to make myself some dinner.  A fantastic dinner that keeps well and will keep me fed for most of the week.  And since I'm a huge fan of spinach, it features prominently in this dish.  Also, I'm kind of a saucy lasagna person, so I like using lots of extra; if you're more of a crispy edge lasagna person, feel free to scale back.

Note: I used vodka pasta sauce in mine, but you can certainly go with whatever sauce profile moves you.

Double Spinach Lasagna

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 (5-ounce) bag baby spinach leaves
1 (32-ounce) container whole milk ricotta
1 (8-ounce) package Kraft Five Cheese Italian shredded cheese
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1 large egg
1 pound Italian sausage
1 tablespoons canola oil
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 (24-ounce) jars pasta sauce
1 (17.6-ounce) package Delverde instant lasagna noodles with spinach
⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a 12-inch skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat.  Add the mushrooms and sauté until they release their water and then it cooks off.  Add the spinach leaves and toss together until the spinach wilts.  Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, half of the shredded cheese, the Italian seasoning and the egg.  Mix well.  Add the cooled mushroom and spinach mixture and stir to combine.  Set aside.

In a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat, add the loose sausage and the oil, breaking the sausage up into crumbles.  When the sausage is almost cooked through, add the onion.  Continue to cook until the onion is translucent, then add the garlic.  Sauté for another 30 seconds, just until you start to smell the garlic, then add a jar of pasta sauce.  Stir until warmed through.

Spray a large glass or ceramic lasagna dish with cooking spray.  Spoon some of the sausage sauce mixture into the bottom of the dish, then lay down a layer of the instant lasagna noodles.  Spread one third of the ricotta mixture over the noodles, then spoon additional sauce over the cheese before topping with the next layer of noodles.  Continue layering until ricotta and sauce are all used up and there are noodles on the top.  Pour the second jar of pasta sauce over the top of the bare noodles, then sprinkle with the remaining shredded cheese and the Parmesan.

Spray a large sheet of aluminum foil with additional cooking spray, then cover the lasagna dish, sprayed side down towards the cheese.  Bake for 1 hour, then remove the foil and bake for another 20 minutes, or until the cheese starts to brown.  Let set for approximately 15 to 20 minutes to cool slightly before slicing.

Makes 12 servings

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