TECHNIQUES, & FACTS
Nonstick cooking spray will help prevent your lasagna from sticking to the bottom, sides, and corners of your baking dish.
For the fullest flavor, use fresh garlic.
Italian brands vary from region to region, so brand preference is a personal choice. Extra virgin olive oil, which comes from the first pressings of the olives, is definitely a favorite.
While handmade pasta noodles are considered by many to be the finest choice for lasagna, the process is time-consuming. The good news is that you can find fresh pasta noodles at many pasta shops, delis, and grocery stores. And dried pasta noodles are absolutely acceptable. No-boil noodles are a nice way to fix up a lasagna in short order. Just be sure you have a lot of sauce to generously cover each layer, especially the top. The moisture will help cook the noodles.
No Italian pantry should be without canned, peeled plum tomatoes. Endlessly versatile, they can be used in any style sauce. Simply crush them by hand for a rustic, chunky sauce or puree them for a smoother sauce.
Use tomato paste to thicken your sauce. For more intense flavor, try using sundried tomato paste.
Glass and ceramic baking dishes are our preference, as they make an easy transition from oven to table.
Store and Making Ahead
Many lasagnas can be prepared the day before you want to serve them. Simply assemble, then cover with plastic or foil and refrigerate until ready to bake.
How to tell when it's done
Lasagna is done when it's bubbly and nicely browned in spots, and hot in the center.
Let your lasagna rest
After baking, let your lasagna rest 10 to 15 minutes before cutting to allow sauces and fillings to set.