Making Gloria’s Lasagna! Chef Rick Tremonto Honors His Mom For My “52 In 22” Cooking Challenge!

Time For A Traditional Italian Lasagna Dish – Thanks To A Chef’s Mom!

There is nothing better for the fall than a comforting meal that is full of flavor – so it’s time for a homemade Lasagna, thanks to Gloria Tramonto, Mother to an acclaimed Chicago Chef!

For week #42 in my “52 In 22” cooking challenge, I took out a cookbook I’ve owned for a decade, because it’s filled with terrific family recipes from a master Chef!

In 2006, acclaimed chef Rick Tramonto opened Osteria di Tramonto on Chicago’s north shore. While that restaurant is no longer open, I bought the cookbook and wanted to share a dish that was from his Mom!

Gloria’s Lasagna!

As he writes in his cookbook: “Because my mom made a big pan of this lasagna at least once a week when I was growing up, it’s near and dear to my hear….as down-to-earth and satisfying a dish as you will ever find.”

Here are all of the ingredients you will need – and yes, those are “oven-ready lasagne” noodles…more on those, but first, let’s make the filling:

1 tbl olive oil

1/2 large yellow onion diced

2 tbl minced garlic – I use much more!

1 lb spicy Italian sausage

1 lb ground beef

1/2 cups white wine – drink a glass while cooking!

2 14-ox. cans plum tomatoes

1 tbl ground fennel seeds

2 tsp red pepper flakes

1 tbl fresh basil

1 tsp chopped oregano

1 lb ricotta cheese

1 large egg

1 – 1/2 cup grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese

lasagna sheets

Heat the oil in a large sauce pan and cook your onion and garlic.

Once that has been in the pot for ten minutes cooking in olive oil, it’s time to bring out the big guns:

I used regular Italian sausage but Chef likes spicy – and of course ground beef…cooking for 10-12 minutes until cooked through…

Once cooked, use a slotted spoon to remove the meat, but leave the oil in the pan because you are about to use it again!

Here are the ingredients for the sauce as noted above…

Using that leftover oil and bits of remaining meat in the pan, add the wine and stir to loosen anything stuck to the bottom for about two minutes, then add the canned tomatoes:

Follow it up with your seasonings and spices and cook for a few minutes, before adding the meat mixture back in and cooking for 15 minutes….your meat sauce filling is ready to go…

Now, time to make the cheesy spread that brings all of the ingredients together: mix the ricotta with the egg and a half cup of the cheese…

Here is the final assembly before baking, and for the sake of fun, I included a bit of my banter with Alex as she questioned my use of those “oven ready” noodles – enjoy!

Again, a layer of sauce on the bottom, then your lasagna sheets, then the ricotta spread and then meat sauce, shredded cheese and another layer of noodles.

Here’s your before and after 30 minutes in the oven at 400 degrees:

And here is what happened after the Lasagna was baked:

Dig In!

As you can see, Gloria’s Lasagna came out of the dish perfectly – you can see the layers of noodle and meat – and notice that the noodles are very plump, so the par-boiled ones work for me!

As you can see, the dish is plenty for 4 or more people, or great for leftovers too!

As mentioned in one of the videos, I did indeed share my Sicilian “Ricotta Tart” recipe for a previous edition of the “52 In 22” cooking challenge:

You can see how that recipe turned out by clicking on my story here:

All year long, I’ve tried new dishes – and in one case I made from a French cookbook that was all in that language!

How did I do fumbling my way through a language I try to speak but really can’t?

Click here to find out!

I also wanted to celebrate creole cooking from New Orleans, and thanks to a legendary restaurant, I did!

Commander’s Palace had an incredible recipe – click here to see how I did!

I also have tried to cook food from parts of the world I’ve never visited – like Macau:

Do you want to know what makes a Macau Meatloaf a Macau Meatloaf?

Click here for the answer:

I also cooked a delicious, traditional Italian “Sunday Gravy”:

I learned an invaluable fact about this “Sunday gravy” thanks to Actor Stanley Tucci!

Click here to see the recipe and find out what I learned:

If you enjoy these posts, why not subscribe and never miss out? It’s easy, and there are NO ads of any kind, just stuff I like – from music to movies, books, travel, food and more…click on the main page and “follow” me on the upper right…

As for my “52 Cookbooks 52 Recipes” challenge, I am sharing and storing all of these recipes on my food website as well:

“Bite! Eat! Repeat!” is your site for all things food – from these step-by-step cooking directions for 52 dishes from around the world – to fun stuff like Caviar Tater Tots!

Here’s just one of the many fun stores you can find there:

If you like what you see, please click on my link and follow this blog as well!

Let me know what you think of my “52 In 22” challenge!

If you like the story, share it with friends on social media! Thanks!

Categories: cookbooks, Food, food blog, Food Review, Italy, Recipes, Restaurants, Wacky Food

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9 replies

  1. I love lasagne, John. A terrific recipe.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Okay, I have to try that! It looks absolutely delicious! Love the videos by the way, complete with commentary! And I’m all in for the noodles but be sure and let me know if you hear back from Rick! 🙂 🙂


  3. This makes me so hungry for lasagna


  4. OK that looks realllllly good!!!


  5. I do enjoy Lasagna, but I have never eaten it made with Italian sausage before. Your version looks delicious, John, and I would love to try it.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person


  1. Making Gloria’s Lasagna! Chef Rick Tremonto Honors His Mom For My “52 In 22” Cooking Challenge! – Bite! Eat! Repeat!

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