My son in law requested either lasagna or chicken parm for his birthday meal. He told me to choose either one to cook. I couldn't. So I made a combination of both of his requests. Needless to say, this turned our surprisingly delicious.
Let's make out sauce first:
3 large (28 oz.) cans of crushed tomatoes
2 (6 oz.) cans tomato paste (basil and oregano)
1 T. olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 lbs. Italian sausage, browned and drained
1 t. Italian Seasoning
1/4 t. dried red pepper flakes
1 - 2 t. salt
1 t. freshly ground black pepper
1 T. sugar
2 T. red wine vinegar
In a large Dutch oven, add crushed tomatoes and tomato paste and let heat slowly over low heat. In a medium skillet, add olive oil and heat over medium high heat. Add onions and peppers and let cook, stirring occasionally, 5 - 7 minutes, just until vegetables begin to soften. Add garlic and cook 1 minute and add all of the vegetables into the pot with the tomatoes.
Brown Italian sausage in the same skillet (no need to miss up another one!). Drain and add to the sauce. Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine everything. Reduce to the lowest heat, cover and let simmer for a few hours. Stir frequently to prevent sticking.
Now to build our lasagna:
1 (1 lb.) box of no boil lasagna noodles
32 oz. ricotta cheese
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 t. Italian seasoning
1/2 t. chopped parsley
4 cups shredded 5 Italian cheese blend (divided)
Combine all the filling ingredients (2 cups of the cheese) in a large bowl. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a deep lasagna baking pan or two (9 x 13) baking dishes.
Spread a layer of sauce on the bottom of the baking pan followed by a layer of noodles. Spread another layer of sauce on top of the noodles and then spread a thin layer of the filling on top of the sauce.
Repeat the layering process until all the filling is used. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the shredded cheese.
Cover with foil and place in oven for 60 - 70 minutes until a knife inserted into the lasagna goes in easily. That's when you know the noodles are tender.
While the lasagna is baking, let's cook our chicken parmigiana!
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups Italian bread crumbs
2 T. olive oil
Place chicken breasts, one at a time, between two sheets of plastic wrap or wax paper and pound until thin.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
Pour beaten eggs in a shallow dish. Place bread crumbs in a shallow dish.
Dip chicken breasts (1 at a time) into eggs and then dredge in bread crumbs. Fry in olive oil until golden brown and cooked through. As chicken is cooked, place on a plate while you cook the remaining chicken.
The lasagna is now cooked and ready to remove from the oven!
Let's top the lasagna with those golden brown chicken breasts.
And sprinkle over the last cup of shredded cheese.
Return to oven and place under the broiler until the cheese is bubbly. Now dig in!