This unique, hearty lasagna is packed with aromatic, delicious strong flavors — and it’s the epitome of comfort food! It’s going to be a long day.
My dad was just wheeled into surgery — 6 hours of open heart surgery, that is.
As you probably know, I typically keep my writing to food, but there is a connection — and well, there’s not much else on my mind today.I made this recipe, as well as a few other interesting casseroles specifically for this difficult week.
Some for my sweet mom, who’s not well and can’t visit my dad in the hospital, and some for my loving aunt who’s staying with her and her caregivers.
And the rest is packaged in single servings in the freezer for my dad when he returns home in a week. This is the perfect type of meal for this situation.
First, it’s incredibly tasty, as food always should be! Second, the textures and flavors combined, make for a comforting eating experience. (Yes, it’s an experience!) And third, it freezes very well, so you can make large quantities and have it on hand for a while.
Don’t get me wrong, this meal is not just for those who are in need of comfort — though I think everyone appreciates a little comfort. 😉
This lasagna is also wonderful to serve at a party, for a family weeknight dinner, or even to reheat for a quick lunch. Everyone will love it!I will let you know how my dad is doing, and I would greatly appreciate it if you could send us positive thoughts today.
Well, it’s the combination of the Feta, Kalamata olives, red onions, tomatoes and lamb that make me think Greek. There you have it.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus a bit more for the pan and drizzling over the lasagna
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped, fresh rosemary
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1¾-pound boneless leg of lamb, excess fat removed & cut into small bite-sized pieces (about ½-inch pieces)
- 2 cups thinly sliced red onion
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes in juice
- ¼ cup dry red wine
- 1 cup roughly chopped, pitted Kalamata olives
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- About 1 dozen no-boil lasagna noodles (see notes)
- 2 cups Feta cheese, crumbled or cut into small pieces (about 10-ounces)
- 2½ cups grated mozzarella cheese
- 3 to 4 bunches of basil (you will need about 4 dozen large leaves), washed and dried, stems removed
- In a large bowl or baking dish, mix the 3 tablespoons of olive oil with the garlic, rosemary and thyme. Add the lamb and mix to be sure all of the pieces are well coated. Cover with plastic wrap and let it marinate for 30 minutes.
- While the lamb is marinating, coat the bottom of a large sauté pan with olive oil and place it over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until soft and golden, about 10 minutes. Add the tomato paste and mix, and cook until it’s very aromatic, about 1 minute. It’s okay if some of the tomato paste browns on the bottom of the pan.
- Turn the heat off until the lamb has marinated for 30 minutes — then, turn the heat to medium-high and add it to the onions. Stirring often, cook for about 5 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Add the tomatoes, wine, olives and cinnamon. Use a flat-bottomed spatula to scrape any ingredients that are stuck to the bottom of the pan and mix them into the liquid. Bring to a boil and then immediately turn the heat to low and gently simmer for 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Here’s How to Season to Taste.)
- Coat the bottom of a 9 X 13 X 2-inch baking pan with a thin layer of the liquid form the lamb mixture.
- Then add a layer of the no-boil lasagna noodles. Now add about half of the lamb mixture to the noodles, followed by a sprinkling of about ⅓ of the mozzarella and feta cheeses. Top this with a solid, single layer of basil leaves and then add another layer of the lasagna noodles.
- Repeat step 7 (the above) once.
- Pour any juices left in the pan over the lasagna noodles and then top with the remaining third of both cheeses, and a generous drizzling of olive oil.
- Place in the preheated 375 degree F oven until the top is golden and it’s sizzling along the edges of the pan, about 30 minutes. Cover the pan loosely with foil, and bake for another 15 minutes.
- Let it cool for about 30 minutes before slicing and serving.