Yucatan Style Lasagna
I saw this one on Create TV, PATI JINICH’s show and wanted to try it. Of course, I could not just let it be. No. I had to get jiggy with it. This is a nice alternative to the normal (and lovely) Italian Lasagna! Made some changes But Yum!
1/4 cup olive oil
1 lbs Mexican chorizo casings removed, coarsely chopped
1 lbs ground beef 1 large red onion finely chopped 5 cloves garlic finely chopped 1 green bell pepper finely chopped (about 1 cup) 5 Tbs freshly squeezed Key lime juice
1 tsp white sugar 4 Tbs achiote paste 1 tablespoon tomato paste 1 tablespoon dried oregano 1 tsp kosher or coarse sea salt 4 cups chicken broth or store, divided 1 cup light beer 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 lbs box of lasagna noodles 2 cups cottage cheese or ricotta 3 cups Edam or Monterey Jack cheese grated
- Heat oil in a casserole over medium-high heat. Add chorizo and beef and cook for 6 to 7 minutes until it starts to brown. Make room in the middle, add onion, garlic and bell pepper, and cook for 9 to 10 minutes until vegetables have completely softened, juices have all been absorbed, and meat has browned further. Chorizo has a lot of flavor but it also produces a fair amount of grease. Remove the greasy liquid produced by this tasty sausage.
- Meanwhile, in a blender, puree white sugar, key lime juice, achiote paste, tomato paste, oregano, salt and a cup of the chicken broth, until completely smooth.
- Pour beer into the casserole with the meat and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until it starts cooking off. Reduce heat to medium and pour in the achiote paste mixture. Stir and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until sauce is very thick. Add crushed tomatoes and the rest of the chicken broth, mix very well, reduce heat to lowest possible setting and cover. Cook for 20 minutes, uncover, raise heat to medium heat and cook for 10 more minutes, then turn off heat.
- Preheat to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Cook 1 lbs of lasagna noodles in salted water with a splash of olive oil until al dente. Drain.
- Coat the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish with about one cup of meat sauce. Then drape pasta sheets, covering bottom of the pan entirely. Keep Layering sauce, ricotta cheese and lasagna noodles. When you reach the top, cover with Monterey Jack or Edam
- Lightly cover the pan with aluminum foil and place in the oven for 40 minutes. Remove foil and leave in the oven for another 20 minutes, until cheese is completely melted, crisp and browned and lasagna is completely set.
Surprise, Surprise, Surprise for all those who think they are diving into grandma’s Italian Lasagna!