Whether or not you grew up with a mother who loves to cook, she gets a free pass from the kitchen on Sunday. And what could be a kinder gesture than whipping up something homemade, inspired by a chef's own mom? This lasagna recipe from James Beard Award-winner Michael Symon, dubbed "Mom's Lasagna," is the signature dish at his newly-opened Italian restaurant Angeline—named after his mother—inside the Borgata hotel in Atlantic City, NJ.
"We had my mom's lasagna all the time growing up, and it's still one of my favorite meals," Symon recently said. "The secret is that she uses a variety of meats including beef, pork, veal, and sausage, giving it a unique and flavorful taste and texture." You know what they say: Mother knows best.
Read on for the recipe.
1/2 cup olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound pork neck bones
1 pound veal
1 pound beef
1 pound spicy Italian sausage, loose or removed from the casing
1/2 cup dry white wine
4 cups chopped peeled tomatoes, or one 28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes, with their juice
3 fresh bay leaves
1 pound dried lasagna noodles
2 pounds whole-milk ricotta cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat leaf parsley leaves
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup fresh oregano leaves
2 large eggs
1 pound fresh mozzarella cheese, grated
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
How to Make It
1. In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion garlic and a three-finger pinch of salt and sweat them until they are translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the neck bones and brown them, about 5 minutes. Add the ground veal, beef and sausage, season with another healthy pinch of salt, and continue cooking until the meat is browned, about 10 minutes. Add the white wine, tomatoes and their juice and the bay leaves, scraping the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon, making sure to get all of the browned bits into the sauce. Season the sauce with salt and simmer for 2 hours over medium heat. Remove the bay leaves and neck bones and let cool. Skim any fat that rises to the surface.
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add enough salt so that it tastes seasoned and allow the water to return to a boil. Add the noodles and cook until al dente. Drain well and set aside.
3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl mix together the ricotta, parsley, basil, oregano, and eggs with a pinch of salt.
4. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
5. In a lasagna pan (9" x 13" is optimal)—ladle about 1 cup of sauce on the bottom. Arrange a layer of noodles on this followed by a layer of sauce and then some ricotta mixture, smoothing it with a spatula to the edges. Repeat the process until the pan is full. Finish with a final layer of noodles, sauce, mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese.
6. Cover the lasagna with aluminum foil and bake for 1 hour. Uncover and bake for 30 minutes. Let cool slightly before cutting and serving.
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