Mom’s Easy Lasagna

Adapted a bit, because I’ve somehow lost the handwritten recipe my mom sent me off to college with. The principle is the same though: it’s ‘easy’ because you don’t have to pre-cook the noodles. The way my mom did it when she had to feed three kids on little time was use a jar of store-bought sauce (probably a 28 oz. jar), watered down, and obviously you can do that too. But making your own sauce is really no effort, and even though it takes the better part of an hour, it’s bubbling on the stove while you’re doing other stuff. ANYWAY.

A tablespoon or two of olive oil

A few cloves of garlic and/or an onion

3 14 oz. cans peeled plum tomatoes (do not drain!)

12 oz to 1 lb of mozzarella, depending on how cheesy you want it (I used three 125g balls of fresh mozzarella)

Parmesan

One package ordinary lasagna noodles (not fresh, not with egg, just dried pasta)

1. Make your sauce. Heat the olive oil in a medium pot on medium-high, then saute your lightly crushed garlic cloves and/or sliced onion for about five minutes, seasoning with salt and pepper. Then add the cans of tomatoes and one can-full of water, bring to the boil, then turn the heat down and partly cover so it simmers. Let it simmer for at least a half an hour, 45 minutes is better. Smush the tomatoes a bit with the back of your spoon to make a smoother sauce. Taste and add salt if necessary.

2. Preheat your oven to 375º. Slice your mozzarella into half-inch thick slices. In whatever pan/dish is perfect for  your vision of lasagna (I use a big rectangular glass pyrex pan), ladle a layer of sauce on the bottom. Top with a layer of noodles–don’t hesitate to break some and fit in place so you’re covering the whole surface with noodles. Top with another layer of sauce (the noodles need to be completely covered), then add 1/3 of your mozzarella slices. Grate some parmesan right into the pan. Repeat layers of noodles, sauce, cheeses, noodles, sauce, cheeses, in that order.

3. Cover with foil tightly and bake in oven for 1 hour. Try not to burn the roof of your mouth when eating.

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