Roman-style lasagna

Prep 30 min
Plus Cooking time: 4 minutes, Standing Time: 10 minutes, Baking Time: 40 minutes
Makes 8 servings

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Ingredients

2 medium bunches
fresh spinach, or 2 300-g pkgs frozen chopped spinach, thawed
500 g
ground beef, veal or chicken
1 tsp
1 tsp
ground cumin
1/2 tsp
cinnamon, optional
1/2 tsp
1/2 tsp
freshly ground black pepper
2 700-mL jars
1/4 cup
sultana raisins, optional
3/4 375-g box
oven-ready lasagna noodle pasta
340-g pkg
shredded Italian cheese blend, about 3 cups total
1/4 cup
toasted pine nuts, optional

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 500F (260C). If using fresh spinach, remove and discard stems. Wash and dry leaves, then coarsely chop. If using frozen spinach, squeeze out as much moisture as possible and set aside.
  • Heat a large wide saucepan over medium-high heat. Add meat. Sprinkle with oregano, cumin, cinnamon, if using, salt and pepper. Cook, working with a fork to prevent meat from clumping, until no longer pink, from 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in pasta sauce and raisins, if using.
  • Thinly spread about 1/2 cup (125 mL) sauce over a 9×13-inch (3-L) baking dish. Top with 4 noodles, breaking to fit. Do not overlap. Stir spinach into remaining sauce. Spread half over noodles. Sprinkle with 1 cup (250 mL) cheese. Add 4 noodles, one-third of sauce, 1 cup (250 mL) cheese and another layer of noodles. Gently press noodles into sauce. Spread remaining sauce over noodles. Evenly sprinkle with 1 cup (250 mL) cheese and pine nuts, if using. Lay a piece of foil overtop and seal shut. Bake right away or refrigerate for up to 2 days.
  • To bake, place warm or cold lasagna in centre of 500F (260C) oven. Immediately reduce heat to 400F (200C). Bake for 20 minutes or, if lasagna was taken cold from the refrigerator, for 40 minutes. Remove foil and continue baking until cheese is golden and sauce bubbles around sides, from 20 to 30 more minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting.

This new twist on a classic dish uses some nifty ingredients often combined in Roman cooking. For a more traditional lasagna, omit the raisins, cinnamon and pine nuts.

Nutrition

Calories 618
Protein 32.5 g
Carbohydrates 59.5 g
Fat 28.5 g
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