Classic Beef Lasagna and Parmesan Herb Knots

For dinner last night, I decided to try some lasagna. And great big gigantic dinner rolls.

Usually my lasagna comes out all runny and looks more like a pasta casserole than lasagna.

I found this recipe in a magazine and have had it in my recipe binder for several years.

I had never made it but when I was working on my menu for this week, decided to give it a try.

It calls for pre-cooked lasagna noodles, which I love using.  The only problem I have had with them in the past is adding the water to make sure the noodles cook.  I always think it’s what makes my lasagna’s runny.  This recipe, though, calls for a cup of wine instead of  water.  Huh, that could be interesting.  All I had in the fridge was some Burgandy, so I used that.

It was so good.  The Burgandy went so well with the spaghetti sauce.  I never would have thought to try that combination but you can bet I will be adding wine to my lasagna from now on.

Santa was good to me.

He brought me this.

I was sooooo excited.  I’ve been wanting a stand mixer for several years but it never quite made it to the top of my list.

I’ve been making homemade dinner rolls every night for dinner.

To go with the lasagna, I made Parmesan Herb Knots.

They were delicious, but huge.  I think I could have made several more from the recipe than I did.

I haven’t used it for cookies or icing or anything like that yet.  We already have so much Christmas candy around that I don’t want anything else sweet in the house to temp me.

Try this lasagna.  You’ll be glad that you did.

CLASSIC BEEF LASAGNA

Ingredients:

1 1/2 lbs lean ground beef

2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella, divided

1 container (15oz.) part-skim ricotta cheese

1 cup red wine

1 jar spaghetti sauce

12 no-boil lasagna noodles

1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups mozzarella and ricotta.

2. Heat large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot.  Add ground beef; cook 8 to 10 minutes, breaking into small crumbles and stirring occasionally.  Add wine; continue cooking 3 minutes, stirring occassionally.  Remove from heat and stir in spaghetti sauce.

3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In 13×9 inch glass baking dish, spread 1 cup beef-sauce mixture.  Layer 4 lasagna noodles over sauce.  Top with half of cheese mixture, 2 cups beef-sauce mixture.  Repeat layers.  Top with 4 remaining lasagna noodles and beef-sauce mixture.  Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella and parmesan.

4. Cover with aluminum foil; bake for 40 minutes.  Uncover; bake 15 to 20 minutes or until bubbly.  Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

PARMESAN HERB KNOTS

Makes 18 rolls

Ingredients:

2 tsp granulated sugar

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast

2/3 cup warm water

1/3 cup fat free powdered milk

1/3 cup potato flakes (instant mashed potatoes, unflavored)

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp salt

3 1/4 to 4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/2 tbsp Italian seasoning

3 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional) for topping

Directions:

1. Combine the granulated sugar, yeast and warm water in mixing bowl.  Stir and let stand for 5 minutes until the mixture is foamy and bubbly.

2. Add the cool water, powdered milk, potato flakes, olive oil, salt and 2 1/2 cups of the flour to the yeast mixture.  Mix for 2 minutes.

3. Add the parmesan cheese and mix until completely incorporated.  If necessary, add the remaining flour, 1 tbsp at a time, until a soft smooth dough ball is formed.  Continue to knead the dough for 4 minutes.  Transfer to a bowl that has been lightly coated with olive oil.  Turn to coat dough and cover with plastic wrap.  Place in a warm, draft-free place to rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.  Combine 1/4 cup olive oil and Italian seasoning and let stand while dough rises.

4. Punch dough to deflate and divide into 18 equal portions.  Roll each into a 12-inch rope and tie into a knot.  Place on prepared baking sheet, cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, about 35-45 minutes.  Brush lightly with herbed olive oil mixture.  If desired, sprinkle each with 1/2 teaspoon of the optional Parmesan cheese.  Place in preheated 350 degree oven and bake until lightly browned, about 15 to 18 minutes.

Enjoy!!

I’m linking up here….

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