My son Dan recently dropped by and I told him I’d made a new dish called Mushroom Ravioli Lasagna. He wanted to try it for himself… and the first words out of his mouth were, “Why did you make so much”? Hey, I prefer to make A LOT. It’s just as easy to make a lot as it is too make a little. And everyone loves leftovers, especially if you have children who seem to eat 18 hours a day. I guess I’m still thinking like the woman who used to feed twin sons…. plus all their friends. And now I just feed the neighbors! ; 0 )
Mushroom Ravioli Lasagna with a Light Basil & Bell Pepper Tomato Sauce is easier, at least to me, than preparing a regular lasagna with lasagna noodles. And the mushroom ravioli gives this Italian staple a whole new spin. The tomato sauce has a fresh, light taste and is a cinch to prepare. I used several types of bell pepper, a bit of red onion, two cans of VERY good quality crushed tomatoes, one can of tomato sauce, some roughly chopped basil – plus salt and pepper. Then I let the sauce simmer for about an hour, which thickened it up perfectly and allowed the flavors to meld.
While the sauce was simmering I mixed the ricotta, parmesan, eggs and fresh Italian parsley, and cooked the mushroom ravioli al dente. All that was left to do was make the layers, which I thought was a lot of fun. (Maybe I need to get out more, huh?)
A few of my sister-in-laws (I have six) visited Saturday night, when I prepared this lasagna. The wine was flowing and we had a lot of fun. Due to my broken ankle, one of them had to drain the ravioli and place the lasagna in the oven… And take it out, of course.
I hope you like this Mushroom Ravioli Lasagna with a Light Basil & Bell Pepper Tomato Sauce as much as we did. Enjoy!
Oven at 425 degrees F for 45 minutes 13″ x 10″ deep casserole dish
Do NOT Cover Lasagna with Foil !
Allow lasagna to stand for 10 minutes after removing it from the oven.
- 1 Tbs. olive oil
- ½ cup each; chopped red pepper, chopped green pepper, chopped orange pepper ++ Or any combination – to equal 1 1/2 cups.
- ¾ cup chopped red onion
- 2 cans (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes ++ I used Sclafani brand for the first time & was very impressed with the quality.
- 1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce ++ I used Hunts – Basil, Garlic & Oregano
- 2 Tbs. roughly chopped fresh basil
- 1 tsp. salt
- ground fresh pepper – to taste
- 4 cups (32 ounces) ricotta cheese
- 1 (16 oz.) package shredded Mozzarella ++ DIVIDED Mix 2 1/2 cups into the ricotta mixture – the rest will be sprinkled top.
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan (or Romano) cheese
- 2 eggs
- 1 Tbs. chopped fresh flat leaf parsley (a.k.a. Italian parsley)
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 – 3/4 tsp. black pepper
- 3 packages (9 0z.) fresh mushroom-stuffed ravioli, cooked according to package directions ++ I used Buitoni Riserva Pasta Agnolotti Wild Mushroom, located in the refrigerator aisle of your grocery store.
- 1 tsp. salt and 1 Tbs. olive oil in water
- 2 Tbs. olive oil… to mix with cooked ravioli. Helps it not to stick. (I forgot to do this…)
Add 1 Tbs. olive oil to a large stock pot or Dutch Oven. Add ½ cup each; chopped red pepper, chopped green pepper, chopped orange pepper ++ Any combination – to equal 11/2 cups and ¾ cup chopped red onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat until peppers and onion begin to soften. (They’ll cook more in the oven.)
Add 2 cans (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes, 1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce, 2 Tbs. roughly chopped fresh basil, 1 tsp tsp. salt and ground fresh pepper, to taste. Simmer sauce, stirring occasionally, for one hour. Do NOT cover pan. Sauce will reduce by about 1/3.
I highly recommend using a splatter guard!
While sauce is simmering, prepare ricotta/mozzarella mixture. In a medium bowl mix 4 cups (32 ounces) ricotta cheese, 2 1/2 cups shredded Mozzarella, 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, 2 eggs, 1 Tbs. chopped fresh flat leaf parsley (a.k.a. Italian parsley), 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 – 3/4 tsp. black pepper. Set aside.
Cook al dente, according to package directions. Drain well and mix with 2 Tbs. olive oil so the ravioli won’t stick together. Set aside.
Putting It All Together ++ See photos below !
In a large casserole – or 13″ x 10″ pan – spread about 1 cups tomato sauce. Layer about 14 mushroom ravioli on top, depending upon the size of the ravioli. Spread HALF the ricotta/mozzarella mixture on top of ravioli. Cover with more tomato sauce. Add your second layer of ravioli, other half of ricotta/mozzarella mixture and your final layer of ravioli. Spread remaining tomato sauce on top.
At this time you can sprinkle on the remaining shredded mozzarella BUT I suggest you wait until the lasagna has been cooking for about 25 minutes, then sprinkle on the shredded mozzarella because this helps the mozzarella to not overcook and turn brown. Enjoy!