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Lasagna with Meat Sauce

December 18, 2016

Meat Lasagna 1Delicious lasagna… for the weeknights or a holiday meal!

  • 3 ½ cups fresh or store bought tomato sauce, divided
  • ½ pound ground turkey
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup shallots, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh sage, chopped
  • Salt
  • 6 no-boil lasagna sheets
  • ½ cup shredded fontina
  • ½ cup shredded pecorino romano

Heat oven at 350 degrees F.

In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil. Add the ground turkey and break the meat with the back of a wooden spatula while sautéing for 4-5 minutes. Add the shallots and garlic and sauté for 3-4 minutes on medium high heat. Add the thyme, rosemary and sage. Add 2 cups tomato sauce and salt. Cook on medium low heat for 20 minutes and check for seasonings. Mix the 2 cheeses together and keep aside.
In an 8X8 pan, add ½ cup tomato sauce at the bottom. Add 2 sheets on top and add 1 cup meat sauce. Sprinkle ¼ cup cheese. Add 2 sheets on top and add 1 cup meat sauce once more. Sprinkle ¼ cup cheese. Add the last 2 sheets and top with 1 cup tomato sauce and sprinkle with ½ cup cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 50 to 60 minutes till bubbly on top.

Meat Lasagna

Homemade Macaroni and Cheese (Italian Style)

January 20, 2010

Homemade Macaroni and Cheese There is really no reason to buy boxed macaroni and cheese- it is so easy and fast to make your own- plus you can control the amount of fat and salt.

Of course I understand why people buy the boxed kind- I do too- sometimes you just don’t have the time or the inclination to cook anything. I do buy the healthy box and have a bunch in my pantry. It is my emergency ‘go to’ for last minutes play dates that turn into a dinner date, etc.

I was making an adult dinner and something that my daughter was not that much into. I was going to give her some components of the meal but I was missing the starch part. I thought of mac and cheese. I went into to my well-stocked pantry to look for a box of macaroni and cheese- well, what do you know- it was not as well stocked as I thought. I couldn’t find any… That is when I decided to make my own. Honestly, it took me less than twenty minutes to cook. I immediately put a pot of water to boil for my whole wheat pasta. I took out some butter (oil can be substituted) and flour; cooked them for a minute and added some milk. I always have shredded cheese in the fridge- in this case, I had a mixture of Italian cheeses- delicious! I added the cheese and my sauce was done. I then added the cooked pasta and topped the whole thing with some more cheese and placed the frying pan under a broiler and browned it- done!

My daughter gave it a thumbs up! She loved it- and I gave it to some of her friends the next day and they all ate it up- no mention of the whole wheat pasta at all. Try this one next time your child asks for macaroni and cheese…

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons white whole-wheat flour
  • 1½ cups one percent milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ pound whole-wheat penne, cooked al dente
  • 1½ cups mix of shredded four Italian cheeses- parmesan, provolone, fontina and asiago (available at Trader Joes)- divided

Preheat oven to broil.

In a medium frying pan heat the butter and add the flour. Whisk the flour on medium heat till the butter is melted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in the milk, making sure no lumps remain. Add salt and nutmeg. Bring to a boil and cook till it is thickened- about 3-4 minutes. Turn the heat off and whisk in one cup of the shredded cheese. Add the cooked pasta and mix well. Top the mixed pasta with the remaining cheese and broil for 7 to 8 minutes or till the top is golden brown.

French Bread Pizza with Roasted Tomato Sauce and Mushrooms

February 26, 2009

french-bread-pizzaI was watching food television the other day- yes, I tend to do that a lot- and someone was making a French bread pizza… It brought back memories. My brother and I used to make it many years ago- I think when we first came to the States from India. We used store bought pizza sauce and a bag of pepperoni and cheese and it was fabulous!! I can still picture the tiny little kitchen in our tiny little apartment! I haven’t made a French bread pizza since then! Time to make one, I thought- so I started to picture in my mind… I wanted to use mushrooms – partly because my daughter loves them- and fontina cheese for its mild creamy flavor. I decided to also add caramelized onions for the adults only. The sauce was troubling me- I didn’t want to use the regular run-of-the-mill marinara sauce- not that there is any thing wrong with it- I wanted something different… after a lot of pondering; I came up with a roasted tomato and garlic sauce. Roasting any vegetable makes it sweet and nutty- including garlic. The mild flavor of this sauce went really well with the mushrooms, caramelized onions and the fontina cheese- overall it was a winner. The sky is the limit with the combinations you can add to this kind of pizza or for that matter, any pizza! I love the regular flat bread pizza I make at home or eat at our favorite pizzeria, but when I was eating the French bread pizza- it revoked memories of the amazing crusty bread in Paris! Just for that reason, French bread pizza is my favorite thing to eat- well, at least for now. We ate it with a fresh green salad and of course a French red wine!!!

Sauce

  • 2 pints cherry tomatoes
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, not peeled
  • 1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper to sprinkle

Preheat the oven on 400 degrees.
On a cookie sheet spread the tomatoes and garlic and top them with the oil and the salt and pepper. Roast them for about 30 minutes or till the tomatoes are soft and almost bursting. Squeeze the garlic out of the husks. Add the tomatoes and garlic into a blender and liquefy the mixture till smooth. Adjust seasonings. You will need about half of the sauce for the pizza.

Toppings

  • 1 medium onion, sliced thin
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil- divided
  • 10 ounces cremini mushroom, sliced
  • Salt to taste

In a medium frying pan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and add the sliced onion. Cook about 20 minutes on medium low heat until the onions are soft and golden brown. Keep aside. In the same pan, heat the remaining olive oil and add the sliced mushrooms. Cook on medium high heat for about 15 minutes, until all the moisture is evaporated and the mushrooms are golden brown. Sprinkle salt to taste. Keep aside.

Pizza

  • 1 large French Baguette
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 7-8 ounces fontina cheese, shredded
  • Salt if needed

Preheat oven on 350 degrees.
Cut the baguette in half, lengthwise. Drizzle the olive oil and spread on both sides. Spread the roasted tomato and garlic sauce. Next, add the shredded cheese followed by the mushrooms and onions. Sprinkle salt to taste. Bake for about 10 minutes and serve!