One of the best and most favorite Italian dishes around, is lasagna. It's just about every ones favorite and it's great for family gatherings covered dishes and social get togethers, both at church and at the office.
Brown onions and garlic in olive oil in fry pan until onions become transparent. Add celery and green pepper. Cook until vegetables are soft. Remove from pan.
Brown ground beef or chuck in a touch of olive oil. After meat is browned, add salt, pepper, chili powder, cumin, Worcestershire sauce, oregano (not too much), mushrooms, cooked onions, cooked garlic, cooked celery and cooked green pepper. Stir until well blended.
Sprinkle prepared dish with red pepper flakes, if desired. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce and red wine of choice. Allow to cook slowly for approximately one hour until sauce blends well.
Cook pasta in separate pot, leaving the pasta slightly undone. It will have a sticky texture to it. Partially cooking the pasta will keep it from getting too mushy during the baking process.
Assemble dish by placing a layer of partially cooked pasta in the bottom of the casserole dish. Dot with a pat of butter. Layer with cheddar cheese, cottage cheese, then a layer of the prepared sauce. Sprinkle with additional red peppers flakes, if desired; then another layer of pasta, butter and cheeses. Finish the top with a layer of sauce. Be easy on the butter. You don't want your dish to be too greasy.
Top the dish with grated Parmesan cheese and additional cheddar cheese (if desired). Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes until cheese is melted on the inside and dish is thoroughly heated.Serve with garlic flavored french bread.
As left overs... Utilize the fragments from this dish by reassembling what you have in a smaller casserole dish. Add a little tomato juice if it seems dry. Grate cheese over top and heat through thoroughly for approximately 30 minutes. This dish will serve approximately 10 -12 people.