I've never been a huge fan of lasagna. I think that this dates back to a mild trauma when I was thirteen and announced that henceforth I would be a vegetarian, or at least until I changed my mind and wanted a hamburger one day (which did actually end up happening). My mother's reaction to this news was to completely ignore me and continue sneaking meat into meals anyway. She made her "special lasagna" frequently during this period, and it was a solid two years before she admitted that the "mushrooms" had, in fact, been...well, not mushrooms. (I was apparently not the most observant teenager.)
But apart from my mother's egregious conduct, I feel like lasagna should be more amazing than it usually is. I mean, it's layered pasta, cheese, and sauce. How could that not be absolutely perfect, every time? Except far too often I find lasagna has too much of one thing, and not enough of another. I want my lasagna to be red sauce-y, and cheesy, and otherwise uncomplicated by unnecessary additions like, say, peppers (BLECH).
For our girls' weekend in Tahoe, each of us was assigned a meal to prepare. This was Alisa's mom's friend Sherry's dish, and it was the best lasagna I have ever, ever, ever tasted (sorry, mom). The secret ingredient? A touch of cheddar cheese. I'm aware that that doesn't sound like a good idea, but this lasagna was transcendent. So you're going to have to trust me.