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Christmas Lasagna

Traditional Red Sauce
Yield: 4-1/2 cups


  • 2 (28 ounce ) cans whole Italian plum tomatoes
  • 1/8 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 tsp. Crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup Chianti or dry red wine
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 4 leaves fresh basil
  • Coarse salt to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste

Puree the tomatoes in a food mill, removing most of the seeds. In a medium stockpot, heat the olive oil over medium heat, add garlic, and sauté until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Add red pepper flakes. While the oil is sizzling, slowly add half of the pureed tomatoes and the wine, stirring to mix. Add remaining tomatoes, reduce heat to low, and let simmer until slightly thickened, 1-1/2 to 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Add the basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. The sauce may be kept in the refrigerator up to 3-4 days in a covered container, or in the freezer for 1 month.

Sauce from Culinary Cafe

Classic Lasagna

For holiday gatherings, everyone enjoys this old-time favorite. Make it ahead of time and enjoy mingling with family and friends!


  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 4-1/2 cups spaghetti sauce
  • 16 pieces (about 16 oz) lasagna, uncooked
  • 4 cups (2 lb. ) ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups (8 oz. ) shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • ¼ tsp. Ground black pepper


In large skillet, brown meat; drain. Stir in spaghetti sauce; simmer 10 minutes. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. Lay flat on foil to cool. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. In large bowl, stir together ricotta cheese, 1-1/2 cups mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, eggs, parsley, salt and pepper. Spread about 1/3 cup meat sauce on bottom of 13 x 9 x 2-inch glass baking dish. Arrange 4 pasta pieces lengthwise over sauce, overlapping edges. Spread 1/3 cheese mixture over pasta; spread with about ¾ cup meat sauce. Repeat layers TWICE, beginning and ending with pasta. Top with remaining meat sauce; sprinkle with remaining ½ cup mozzarella cheese and additional Parmesan cheese, if desired. Cover with foil. Bake 45 minutes, or until hot and bubbly. Remove foil; bake about 10 additional minutes, or until lightly browned. Let stand about 10 minutes before cutting. 8-12 servings.

Make ahead directions:
Prepare as directed above. Do not bake. Cover baking dish tightly with plastic wrap, then foil. Freeze up to 2 months or refrigerate up to 48 hours. Remove foil and plastic wrap; replace foil. If frozen, bake at 350 degrees for 2 hours and 15 minutes. Remove foil; bake 10 minutes longer or until lightly browned. If refrigerated, bake at 375 degrees for 50 to 60 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Remove foil; bake 10 minutes longer or until lightly browned. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting.

To make individual portions, prepare as directed in recipe above. Refrigerate unbaked lasagna overnight. Cut into 8-12 squares (serving size pieces). Place each piece in small microwave-safe dish. Cover tightly. Freeze up to 2 months. Thaw in refrigerator over night. Microwave each dish, loosely covered at HIGH (100%)2-1/2 to 3-1/2 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

Preparation time: 40 minutes

Start-to-finish: 1 hr 45 min.

Recipe from American Beauty pasta

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