Wondertime Lasagna

Prep Time: 20 minutes | Cook Time: 40 minutes | Total Time: 60 minutes | Yield: 1 lasagna

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground beef or ground turkey (or cooked chicken, Italian sausage, andouille, etc.)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (I would use 3 or 4 cloves)
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 26 to 28 ounces (about 3 cups) pasta sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons red wine (optional)
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tablespoons white wine (optional)
  • 12 ounces (3 cups) freshly grated mozzarella
  • 8 no-boil lasagna noodles
  • 2 cups cooked, well-drained spinach, peas, or other vegetables (optional)
  • 1 cup (about 4 ounces) freshly grated Parmesan

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 400. Spray a 9-by-13-inch dish. Thoroughly cook the ground beef, garlic, and herbs in a large skillet, stirring frequently and breaking up the meat. Stir in pasta sauce and bring to a simmer for about 2 minutes. Season to taste and add the red wine, if using. Set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring chicken stock to a boil. Add cream cheese, turn heat to low, and whisk until smooth, about 6 minutes. Season to taste and add the white wine, if using.
  3. Spoon half the meat sauce into the pan as evenly as possible. Sprinkle 1 cup grated mozzarella over the meat mixture. Top with 3 or 4 lasagna noodles. If using vegetables, toss them evenly over the noodles.
  4. Pour the cream-cheese sauce over the noodles and cover with another cup of grated mozzarella. Arrange 3 or 4 lasagna noodles over the cheese, then spoon remaining meat mixture over noodles as evenly as possible. Top with the rest of the mozzarella and the grated Parmesan. Bake until brown and bubbling, 45 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes.

Notes: I like to add finely diced carrots, and I like to add a few more lasagna noodles. You might as well double the recipe and make 2. It’s not much more work than making 1. I always know someone who has a new baby, or a sick family member, or has just had surgery. Everyone needs a little help sometimes.

Recipe Origin: Based on Wondertime recipe. Great magazine that is no longer.

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Slow Cooker Moroccan Lentil Soup

Prep Time: 30 minutes | Total Time: 4 hours 30 minutes | Yield: Serves 12

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 2 cups chopped carrots
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 6 cups vegetable broth or reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water 3 cups chopped cauliflower
  • 1 3/4 cups lentils
  • 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 cups chopped fresh spinach or one 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 TBSP lemon juice

Directions:

  1. Combine onions, carrots, garlic, oil, cumin, coriander, turmeric, cinnamon and pepper in a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker.
  2. Add broth, water, cauliflower, lentils, tomatoes and tomato paste and stir until well combined.
  3. Cover and cook until the lentils are tender, 4 to 5 hours on High or 8 to 10 hours on Low.
  4. During the last 30 minutes of cooking, stir in spinach. Just before serving, stir in cilantro and lemon juice.

Notes:

Recipe Origin:  Adapted from an EatingWell recipe.

Northern Italian Lasagna

Prep Time: ? minutes | Cook Time: ? minutes | Total Time: 2 minutes | Yield: Serves 8-10

Ingredients:

  • 12 ounces lasagna noodles
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups grated Parmesan cheese or Romano cheese
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 1/2 cups milk

Filling:

  • 1 ¾ cups crumbled firm tofu (drained)
  • 1 (28 ounce) can cut tomatoes
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • ¼ cup chopped carrot
  • ¼ cup chopped celery
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • ½ teaspoon vegetable bouillon granules
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1/3 cup light cream or milk

Directions:

  1. In a large saucepan (or Dutch oven) cook tofu until browned.
  2. Add undrained tomatoes, onion, carrot, celery, parsley, tomato paste, bullion granules, nutmeg, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pepper to tofu. Stir.
  3. Stir in wine and ¼ cup water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat.
  4. Boil gently, uncovered, for 45 to 60 minutes or until desired consistency, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
  5. Cook pasta in boiling water just until tender; drain. Rinse with cool water.
  6. Combine cheeses.
  7. For the sauce melt butter in saucepan. Stir in flour, pepper, nutmeg, and ½ teaspoon salt. Add milk; cook and stir until thick and bubbly (don’t let burn!).
  8. Arrange a single layer of the pasta in the bottom of a greased 13”x9”x2” baking dish. Spread 1/3 white sauce over noodles. Spread 1/3 Tofu “meat” filling over white sauce. Spread 1/3 cheese over tofu. Repeat layers of pasta, sauce, tofu mix and cheese 2 more times.
  9. Cover with foil and bake at 350degrees for 40 to 50 minutes. Remove from oven. Let stand 10 minutes.

Notes:

Recipe Origin:  We’ve made this probably dozens of times. No one ever suspects there is tofu in there. It tastes just like the lasagna my friend’s Northern Italian mother makes.

Meatballs

Prep Time: ? minutes | Cook Time: ? minutes | Total Time: ? minutes | Yield: Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 4 eggs
  • 2 C dry bread crumbs or oatmeal, or a combination
  • 1/2 C finely chopped onion
  • 1 TB salt
  • 1 TB Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 4 pounds lean ground beef

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and add the next 5 ingredients. Mix well.
  2. Add ground beef and mix well with your hands. Shape into 1 inch meatballs, about 1 TB per meatball.
  3. Place on a baking sheet. I like to line mine with parchment to make clean up easier.
  4. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 10-15 min. until no longer pink.
  5. Drain on a paper towel lined pan and cool.
  6. This makes about 5 batches of 30 meatballs each.

Notes: Pack in freezer bags of 30 each. It is so easy to pull out what you need for a quick week night dinner, no need to thaw, but takes a little longer for them to heat up.

Recipe Origin:  No idea.

Pumpkin Muffins

Prep Time: ? minutes | Cook Time: ? minutes | Total Time: ? minutes | Yield: 12 regular size muffins. Few dozen mini muffins.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups whole spelt flour
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice blend
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • Chopped pecans or walnuts would be good!

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a muffin pan with liners and set aside.
  3. Using a whisk or fork mix together the flour, pumpkin spice, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and drop in the eggs, honey, and melted butter. Mix together until well combined. Fold in the pumpkin puree. Do not overmix.
  5. Pour the batter into the muffin pan so it’s evenly distributed.
  6. Bake until golden brown and a toothpick comes clean, about 18 – 20 minutes.
  7. Store at room temperature or freeze for a rainy day.

Notes:  These are great frozen as mini muffins for the kids’ school lunches.

Recipe Origin:  Adapted from a recipe on 100 Days of Real Food. Wonderful website.

Lasagna

Prep Time: ? minutes | Cook Time: ? minutes | Total Time: ? minutes | Yield: 1 lasagna

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces lasagna noodles
  • 1 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 cup minced onions
  • 1 TBSP chopped garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 (32 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce   (or 2- 26 oz jars)
  • 1 (16 ounce) package large curd cottage cheese
  • 1 15 oz package ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • few dashes grated nutmeg
  • 1 pound mozzarella cheese, shredded

Directions:

  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes, or until al dente; drain. Or you can soak noodles in a pot of hot tap water for 20 minutes, drain, and not cook them.
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, saute ground beef, onions, garlic, salt and garlic salt until meat is brown. (Can add 1 tsp dried oregano, and 1 tsp Italian seasoning at this point if desired).
  3. Drain excess fat, add spaghetti sauce to beef mixture, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
  4. Combine cottage and ricotta cheeses, 1 or 2 eggs, and few dashes of nutmeg.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray Pam in a 9×13 inch glass baking dish.
  6. Line bottom of pan with three lasagna noodles.
  7. Spread 1/3 of sauce mixture over noodles.
  8. Layer 1/3 of the cottage and ricotta cheese mixture over the sauce.
  9. Sprinkle 1/3 of the mozzarella over the cottage cheese.
  10. Repeat this layering process until all ingredients are used up.
  11. Bake in the preheated oven for one hour.
  12. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Notes:

Recipe Origin: No idea.

Friendly Lasagna

Prep Time: ? minutes | Cook Time: ? minutes | Total Time: ? minutes | Yield: Makes 2. Keep one, give one to a friend. Or freeze it.

Ingredients:

  • 16 oz box lasagna noodles
  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1/2 cup minced onions
  • 1  tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 2 (32 oz) jars spaghetti sauce (or thereabouts. I can never seem to find 32 oz. jars)
  • 1 (32 oz) container large curd cottage cheese
  • 2 lbs mozzarella cheese, shredded

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray Pam in a 9×13 inch dish.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes, or until al dente; drain. Or you can soak noodles in a pot of hot tap water for 20 minutes, drain, and not cook them. Or you can use the kind of noodles that don’t need cooking.
  3. In a large skillet over medium heat, saute ground beef, onions, salt and garlic salt until meat is brown.
  4. Add 1 tsp dried oregano, and 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  5. Add spaghetti sauce
  6. Line bottom of pan with three lasagna noodles.
  7. Spread 1/3 of sauce mixture over noodles.
  8. Layer 1/3 of the cottage cheese over the sauce.
  9. Sprinkle 1/3 of the mozzarella over the cottage cheese.
  10. Repeat this layering process until all ingredients are used up. Finish with mozzarella on top.
  11. Bake for one hour.
  12. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Notes: I have nicknamed this “Friendly Lasagna” because it makes 2. I always seem to have a friend who needs one.

If you want to add veggies, add ½ box of 10oz frozen, chopped spinach to meat mixture while cooking. Also, can sautee mushrooms and add after meat layer.

Recipe Origin:

Someone at church gave this to me one day and asked me to make it for some teenagers that were having a lock in at the church. This is really a surprisingly easy and good lasagna!