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This lasagna makes just enough for 2, minus the hassle
This Lasagna Loaf has all the makings: Italian sausage, ricotta cheese, pasta sauce and even some spinach. - photo by Regina H. Boone

Downsizing recipes is not always an easy task, especially for classics like lasagna.

How do you take a 9-inch-by-13-inch baking dish of lasagna that would serve six or more and scale it down to two or maybe three servings?

You could cut the ingredients by half and boil just a few noodles. But you'd need a small baking dish.

Or you could make one large pan of lasagna, cut it into portions and freeze them. But you'd need room in the freezer for them - and you'd need to remember they're in there.

Or you can make today's Lasagna Loaf.

What I found with those no-boil lasagna noodles is that they fit just right in a standard, 8-inch-by-4-inch loaf pan and bake up nicely. A key to using no-boil noodles, which are pre cooked and dried, is to cover them with enough sauce so that they cook properly and there are no crunchy parts.

Many recipes say you can use any lasagna noodles without boiling them first; they just need adequate moisture to cook them.

This Lasagna Loaf, which doesn't quite fill the pan, has all the makings: Italian sausage, ricotta cheese, pasta sauce and even some spinach.

For the sausage, I used Hot Lean Turkey Italian sausage. It has about half the fat grams compared with other store brands of hot Italian pork-style sausage.

Jennie-O Turkey store brand sells the hot variety in a 19.5-ounce package that contains 5 sausage links. Just remove the sausage meat from the casing and brown in a skillet before using.

Be sure to let the lasagna rest for at least 15 minutes once it's baked. It will be easier to cut and hold its shape better.

You can assemble lasagna, today's included, a day ahead. Cover it tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Then be sure to bake it from its chilled state. Do not bring it to room temperature beforehand.