Tag Archives: home cooking

Never Fail Lasagna

17 Apr

A friend recently asked me for advice on making lasagna. I told her as long as you use good ingredients, lasagna is easy.
For a basic lasagna, I suggest layering the ricotta cheese mixture with sliced portabella mushrooms and marinara sauce. Spinach is a nice addition and allows you to skip the salad.
My ricotta mixture is 2lbs. ricotta, one egg, and approximately 8 oz. of grated mozzarella. Stir together with plenty of fresh ground black pepper and freshly chopped parsley. Dried oregano can substitute for parsley. Never use dried parsley. It tastes like green paper.
I almost never put meat in lasagna, probably because my Mom never did. When I do use meat, I prefer sausage to boring ground beef. Other ways to vary the dish include special cheeses, olives, veggies, herbs, pestos, and sauces. Squash, sage, and bechamel (white) sauce is a popular variation. I did something similar with my Fall Pumpkin Lasagna. I want to try gorgonzola, roasted red peppers, olives, and greens layered with traditional ricotta.
A final note for the lazy: I love the no-bake noodles. Just be sure to have plenty of liquid in the dish.

Zingy Leftovers

9 Jan

My favorite trick for changing up leftovers is Old Bay.  This works particularly well with creamy sauces. For example, I made a big pot of potato-broccoli chowder. It was very good, but after a few meals, I was a little tired of it. Sometimes I freeze individual serving of leftovers, but this time I just added Old Bay to the bowl and heated it up. It was like having an entirely different meal. If you try this, add slowly and taste as you go. Old Bay will make your food very salty and crazy spicy if you add too much. Enjoy!

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