Make it Soup

This has been a busy week. The book had three events that required lots of cooking, I took dinner to a sick friend, and provided Titans snacks. So by yesterday afternoon when a request for lasagna came through, I have to admit that I just wasn’t up to it. I love lasagna but it’s kind of a project to begin a 6 o’clock on a Sunday night. Still I hate to disappoint – so I shook things up and made Lasagna Soup. It was wonderful and completely delicious. I didn’t need to make two sauces, didn’t need to boil noodles (hate those oven ready ones) and I didn’t need a filling, and it didn’t need to be layered in a casserole and baked. Best of all we loved it – Lasagna Soup is a perfect meal for any night. The flavors are all there. It starts with sautéed ground beef, onions and garlic. A few cans are required, tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste and of course beef broth for the soup. Oregano, basil, and red wine gave it a little depth. After the soup simmered for about 20 minutes, I broke up lasagna noodles and added them right to the pot! This was kind of thrilling because I usually manage to get several pans plus a casserole dirty with traditional lasagna.  Bet you’re thinking – what about that nice gooey cheese filling – well no problem there. In a small bowl I combined ricotta, mozzarella, and Parmesan cheese plus the last few leaves of basil remaining in the garden. That made a perfect topping for the soup. A dollop on top melted into each bite and was just divine. I even added a handful of chopped fresh spinach to the soup to wilt before serving because I usually include it in the filling. Forty minutes later, including simmering time and cooking noodles, we had Lasagna Soup. For a cool rainy night with a fire in the fireplace this dinner couldn’t have been any more perfect. Lasagna will always be on the list as a favorite dish, but Lasagna Soup is a wonderful way to enjoy the flavors of lasagna on a busy night. You are going to love this! Enjoy!

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Lasagna Soup (Printable Recipe)

Ingredients

1 tsp olive oil

1 lb ground beef (or turkey)

1 onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

28 oz can diced tomatoes

8 oz can tomato sauce

4 Tbsp tomato paste

1 tbsp dried oregano

2 tsp dried basil

1 tsp salt

4 cups beef broth

½ cup red wine

10 dry lasagna noodles, broken

Optional: 1 cup chopped fresh spinach

Topping

1 cup ricotta cheese

½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

½ tsp salt

Optional: chopped basil

Directions

In a large pot or Dutch oven, sauté beef in olive oil, breaking up as it cooks.

Add onion and garlic and cook until soft.

Stir in tomatoes, sauce, paste, oregano, basil, and salt.

Add broth and wine and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes.

Break up lasagna noodles and add to soup to cook – about 10 -12 minutes.

While noodles cook combine ingredients for topping in a small bowl.

Add spinach to soup for 1 minute to wilt if desired.

Serve in individual bowls and dollop with a generous spoonful of cheese topping.

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