Lasagna, is a Noto tradition; I can’t image the up-roar that would occur if lasagna was not prepared at least once a month. Lasagna is on every major Noto Holiday table; both DF and Sydney remind me all Thanksgiving morning to prepare the lasagna (as if I could forget)! The lasagna’s sauce is an authentic tradition, Noto Family recipe. Four times a year we spend the entire day, as a family cooking a piece of family history and culture. I found myself “time traveling” about ten years in the future, as I visualize teaching Sydney and I teaching her children/child how to prepare a large pot of sauce. I relish the opportunity Sydney and I will have bonding with a new generation through the culinary arts.
Noto Four Cheese Lasagna:
- 1 1/2 jars Noto Italian sauce
- 80 grams/ 1-cup Parmesan di Reggino cheese, freshly grated
- 80 grams/ 1-cup Pecorino Romnano cheese, freshly grated
- 112 grams/ 1-cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 112 grams/ 1-cup Fontina, shredded
- 907 grams/ 32- ounces whole milk ricotta cheese
- 2 whole eggs
- 2 boxes of lasagna noodles
- palmful dried Italian seasoning, crushed
- palmful dried parsley,crushed
- 1/2-teaspoon white pepper, freshly grated to taste
- salt, for the water
- large pot boiling water
- 15 grams/ 1- Tablespoon butter
- 60 grams/1/2-cup bread crumbs
- 45 grams/ 1/2-cup Panko japanese bread crumbs
- 6 to 8 leaves fresh basil, chiffonade
- fresh parsley, cut off stem
- 1- 3 quart 14x 9-inch/35.5×23 cm heavy casserole pan
Prepare your mise en place and bring the water to boil.
In a medium boil, add the ricotta cheese, eggs, 1/2 teaspoon white pepper, italian seasoning, and dried Italian seasoning. Fold all the ingredients into the ricotta cheese until amalgamated.
Add a nice half a palmful of kosher salt to the boiling water and than add the lasagna noodles. Cook the pasta for 4 minutes, barley par cooked, remove with tongs and lay on tinfoil. Make sure the noodles do not touch or they will stick.
Add one or two ladlefuls of sauce and spread out in an even layer.
Arrange a layer of the lasagna noodles to cozily cover the sauce.
Spread an even coat of the ricotta mixture over the pasta and sprinkle a healthy layer of fontina and mozzarella cheese over the pasta.
Grate both the Pecorino and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheeses over the fontina and mozzarella cheese.
Place a layer of pasta going in the other direction as the first layer … Continue this layering process until the pan is just about full.
Prepare your bread crumb mise en place.
In a bowl, mix the bread crumbs with Panko japanese bread crumbs. Sprinkle the top with an even layer of the bread crumb mixture and dot with butter.
Cover with tinfoil and bake for 60 minutes. Remove the tinfoil and broil on low for 5 minutes or until the lasagna is hot and bubbling.
Allow the lasagna to cool for 15 to 20 minutes prior to serving. Serve with sprinkled chiffonade basil and parsley.