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‘It’s always better the second day’: Secrets from my mom’s Italian kitchen

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The perfect Italian dish for any upcoming holiday!

In my house, Christmas means two things: dragging a tree and all of its loose pine needles through a door that's way too small just days before the big day, AND my mom's lasagna. It's the main course, a true staple of a menu that consists of many delicious Italian dishes.

When my mom cooks, she really cooks. Once she makes lasagna, we usually end up eating it for the next week. Despite the fact that our family is quite small, the leftovers last for days on end. It wouldn't be "the holidays" without it, really.

But that's also why it's so special — it has become a family tradition, passed down from generation to generation.

Family is important in my home, so in classic Italian style, we like to celebrate with a good dish.

Mom's lasagna

Cooking Time: 1 hr 30 min

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds of ground beef
  • Large package of fresh mozzarella
  • Large container of ricotta cheese
  • A few packages of no-bake lasagna noodles
  • Several jars of pasta sauce
  • Onion
  • Marinara sauce
  • Basil
  • Sugar (to sweeten the sauce)

Preparation

  1. Layer aluminum pan with sauce, pasta, beef (cooked) dollop of ricotta and slices of mozzarella (3 layers thick)
  2. After the final layer is covered in sauce and Parmesan cheese, bake for an hour and a half at 350 degrees, or until it is entirely melted together.
  3. Let sit for a few minutes before removing from the oven and enjoy!
  4. A secret tip from mom: it's always better the second day.

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