For the love of community … and lasagna

A full plate of cheesy lasagna

Royal Neighbors employee and member Ann Lembke uses this recipe to impact people in her community. “Providing food for someone in your community is the greatest gift,” said Ann. “I can’t sew. I can’t crochet. I can cook.”

1 lb ground beef
½ lb ground pork/sausage (meat of your choice)
1 24 oz jar of pasta sauce of your choice
1 14 oz jar of pizza sauce of your choice
¼ tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
½ tsp. black pepper
¼ tsp. nutmeg
1 tbsp. brown sugar

16 oz full-fat, small curd cottage cheese
1 egg
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper

Additional Ingredients
12 -15 Lasagna noodles oven-ready, no boil
3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 ½ cups shredded Parmesan cheese
Mix the two kinds of cheese in a bowl for easy layering. Remember to hold enough back for the top of the lasagna.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray a 9×13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.

Cook the ground beef and drain the grease. Cook the ground pork. Mix the beef and pork together and set aside. Mix the pasta sauce and pizza sauce in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add all additional seasonings and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the ground beef and pork to the sauce and continue to simmer.

In a medium bowl, mix all the filling ingredients together and set aside. Do not drain the cottage cheese.

Layering the Lasagna
Spread 1 cup of meat sauce on the bottom of the pan. Top with 3 noodles. Spread 1 ⁄3 of the cottage cheese mixture on top of the noodles. Add 1 cup of mozzarella/Parmesan cheese on top of the cottage cheese layer. Top with 1 cup of meat sauce. Add 3 more noodles and repeat in the same order: cottage cheese layer, mozzarella and Parmesan cheese, then meat sauce. Add 3 more noodles and repeat in the same order as above. After this layer, you will add 3 more noodles and top with the remaining meat sauce. Then add the rest of the mozzarella and Parmesan.

Cover lasagna with foil and bake in the oven for 40 minutes. Take the foil off and cook another 10-15 minutes until top layer of cheese is melted and begins browning.

Once the lasagna is done, take it out of the oven and let it sit for 15–20 minutes before attempting to serve. This will give the layers a chance to rest and then set.