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Christmas Lasagna


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  • Béchamel sauce:
  • 1 quart(s) whole milk
  • 6 tablespoon(s) unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup(s) flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon(s) grated nutmeg
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Tomato sauce:
  • 2 tablespoon(s) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound(s) Italian sausage (hot and sweet), casings removed
  • 1 onion, finely chopped (1 cup)
  • 1 jar(s) (32-ounce) marinara sauce
  • Lasagna:
  • 1 pound(s) fresh or dried spinach lasagna noodles, cooked al dente according to package directions, laid flat on stacked kitchen towels
  • 1 container(s) (15-ounce) whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • 8 ounce(s) mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)
  • 1 cup(s) grated Parmesan cheese
  • Freshly ground black pepper


Servings 12


Step 1

1.To make béchamel sauce: Heat milk in a medium saucepan until hot. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat; whisk in flour until blended. Cook 2 minutes. Gradually begin adding hot milk, whisking constantly, until incorporated and sauce is smooth. Stir in salt, pepper, nutmeg, and bay leaf. Raise heat to medium and bring to a simmer; simmer 3 minutes longer. Pour into a container, cover surface directly with plastic wrap, and cool. (Can be made up to 3 days ahead and refrigerated.)
2.To make tomato sauce: Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add sausage and brown 3 minutes, breaking up clumps with a wooden spoon. Add onion; cook 6 minutes, stirring frequently, until lightly browned. Pour in marinara sauce; bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, partially cover pot, and simmer 15 minutes for flavors to develop. Remove from heat and cool. (Can be made up to 3 days ahead and refrigerated.)
3.To make lasagna: Evenly spread 1 cup of the tomato sauce over bottom of a 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Arrange a layer of noodles over sauce, trimming as necessary. Spread noodles with 1/3 of the béchamel sauce. Spread 1/2 of the ricotta, 1/2 of the mozzarella, and 1/2 of the remaining tomato sauce; sprinkle 1/4 cup of the Parmesan over top. Make a second layer of noodles. Spread 1/2 of the remaining béchamel sauce over pasta, then the remaining ricotta, mozzarella, and tomato sauce, and another 1/4 cup of the Parmesan. Top this with a final layer of noodles. Spread the remaining béchamel sauce evenly over the top. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan, then sprinkle with pepper.

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