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Thread: Scotto Family Meatball Lasagna, anyone?

  1. #1
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    Scotto Family Meatball Lasagna, anyone?

    DH has asked me to make this lasagna for a family get-together. I like the idea, but YOW! That's a lot of cheese! Anyone make this? If so, how does it come out? I have visions of a gloppy mess. I have made lasagna before, but this is decadence to the nth degree--is it worth it, or better to adjust to a more, ahem, reasonable amount of ricotta (5 POUNDS? Plus 2 pounds of fresh mozarella!)? Any advice?

    Oh, and I'm not so much worried about fat/calories--it's the extravagence that attracted DH's eye (and stomach). I'm more concerned with the amounts all fitting into the pan...and being in edible form once out of the pan. I don't want an unappetizing glop of pasta, cheese and sauce.

    MEATBALL LASAGNA

    INGREDIENTS

    For the meatballs

    2 slices bread

    1/2 cup milk

    2 pounds ground beef

    1 cup finely chopped onions

    3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

    2 eggs

    4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

    1½ tablespoons chopped garlic

    salt and pepper

    3 tablespoons olive oil

    5 cups tomato sauce, warmed

    For the lasagna

    2 pounds fresh mozzarella, diced

    2 cups grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

    5 pounds fresh ricotta cheese

    3 eggs

    1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

    salt and pepper

    4 fresh pasta sheets (store-bought), or 2 pounds lasagna noodles

    DIRECTIONS

    To make the meatballs: Soak the bread in the milk. In a medium bowl, mix the ground beef, bread, onions, parsley, eggs, cheese, and garlic. Add slat and pepper to taste. If the mixture is dry, add 1/2 cup of cold water and mix well. Form into about 12 meatballs.

    Place the meatballs in a sauté pan with the olive oil and fry over medium to high heat until brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Drain the meatballs on paper towels.

    In a stockpot, heat the tomato sauce over low heat. Add the meatballs to the sauce and simmer over low heat, covered, for 30 minutes, or until meatballs are cooked through. Remove from the heat and set aside.

    To make the lasagna: Mix 3/4 of the mozzarella, 1 cup of the Parmigiano Reggiano, and the ricotta in a large bowl. Add the eggs and parsley. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

    Remove the meatballs from the sauce. Crumble the meatballs and set aside.

    Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat and cook the pasta until al dente, about 1 minute. Drain and shock in cold water.

    To assemble: Preheat the oven to 350F. Pour 1 cup of the hot tomato sauce in the bottom of an 8 x 12-inch baking pan. Place a pasta sheet over the layer of sauce, cutting the sheet to fit if necessary.

    Spread 1/3 of the cheese mixture over the pasta. Spread 1/3 of the crumbled meatballs over the cheese. Add some of the sauce and sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 of the mozzarella and Parmesan. Repeat the layers of sauce, pasta, cheese, and meatballs two more times.

    Spread the remaining cup of tomato sauce over the top layer of the pasta and sprinkle the remaining Parmigiano Reggiano cheese over the sauce.

    Bake the lasagna for 1 hour or until the top is golden.

    Serves 6
    As the arc of history bends towards justice, it's a new, more progressive day. --Steve Benen, The Maddow Blog, 11-07-12

  2. #2
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    I think they are talking about a REALLY DEEP 8x12 inch pan. Most lasagna recipes call for 9 oz of dried lasagna noodles, so 2 lbs, that's more than triple a standard 3-layer, 9x12 lasagna. And 5 pounds of ricotta is a lot. Especially for 6 people. I bet you can half this recipe, make it in a standard 9x 12 pan, and it will still be crazy decadent and serve 8ish.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by jphilg View Post
    I think they are talking about a REALLY DEEP 8x12 inch pan. Most lasagna recipes call for 9 oz of dried lasagna noodles, so 2 lbs, that's more than triple a standard 3-layer, 9x12 lasagna. And 5 pounds of ricotta is a lot. Especially for 6 people. I bet you can half this recipe, make it in a standard 9x 12 pan, and it will still be crazy decadent and serve 8ish.
    That's kind of where I was going. I do have a deep dish, but even so...I bought the mozzarella, and 2 lbs of ricotta. I've made my marinara, too. Everything seems so rich! Thanks for the thoughts. I think I can make this work w/ a little less.
    As the arc of history bends towards justice, it's a new, more progressive day. --Steve Benen, The Maddow Blog, 11-07-12

  4. #4
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    When I make a decadent lasagna with these kinds of quantities, I use a 16 x 12 x 4 rectangular turkey roaster pan.

    You know those kind that are a navy blue or black "paint"/enamel with white dots all over them? That pan. I can't find an online photo but any of those rectangular turkey pans will do.

    Editing to add - kind of like this only with dots - but you get the idea about the depth.

    It's very impressive to your guests, too!

    Loren
    The term "working mother" is redundant.

  5. #5
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    I also have a roasting pan that I'd use for this one. You're right. That's lots of cheese. And two pounds of pasta? Sounds like a double batch to me. Good luck and let us know how it turns out. I think this will serve far more than six!
    TKay

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gracie View Post
    When I make a decadent lasagna with these kinds of quantities, I use a 16 x 12 x 4 rectangular turkey roaster pan.

    You know those kind that are a navy blue or black "paint"/enamel with white dots all over them? That pan. I can't find an online photo but any of those rectangular turkey pans will do.

    Editing to add - kind of like this only with dots - but you get the idea about the depth.

    It's very impressive to your guests, too!

    Loren
    Oh, I have pans aplenty! I have a beautiful old enamelware pan that is called into duty for just such recipes, and looks so pretty on the table (it's creamy yellow!). But the recipe calls for an 8x12. And it's not a misprint, because I've found it in a few different places (DH found it in a Today Show cookbook, I found it in a book by the Scottos themselves). I have a very nice, deep pan for just such types of things. I just can't imagine using that quantity of ricotta and having it hold together well. Heck, I don't think I'd be able to lift it! 5 lbs ricotta, 2 lbs mozzarella, 2 lbs beef, 5 cups sauce...I'm a little afraid of it, to tell the truth! It's like "The Lasagna That Ate Leigh's Kitchen."

    Sooo...I'm going to play with the recipe. I think it's still going to be over-the-top rich. I'll have to report back. Wish me luck!
    As the arc of history bends towards justice, it's a new, more progressive day. --Steve Benen, The Maddow Blog, 11-07-12

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