Hi and thank you for visiting my blog. My name is Tina, I am 42 years old and married to a wonderful man named Robert. I live in the Cleveland, Ohio area with my husband and our two pugs, Koko and Lucy and a special kitty, named Trixie.

I am of Italian decent and love to cook not just for my family but for everyone! I have a lot of weeknight dinner guest and try to keep it casual but delicious! My Mom passed away a few years ago and was my great teacher.

In 2012 I have changed the way I eat. A real lifestyle change to be healthier, eat a nutrient dense diet and remove all processed foods, refined flours and sugars from our diet. I do cook a lot healthier than my Mom did and do a lot more vegetarian meals, poultry and fish. I'm trying to find a way to keep the traditions of family, friends and good food in my house always.

I plan to post my weekly menus, update with new recipes, health information and articles and how to eat mostly organic in an economical way. I will also periodically post personal updates of my journey to regain health and hope.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Quick Lasagna for Becky!

My friend Becky asked me for a lasagna recipe and I decided to post it as I was typing it out for her. It is a good quick lasagna (but not fast).

Quick Lasagna
Even though this recipe has a lot of ingredients and steps, it is actually my quick version of lasagna. My Mom's lasagna recipe takes two days to make. I hope you enjoy!

1 lb. Barilla NO COOK lasagna noodles or package of lasagna noodles, par-boiled.
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil or canola oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 lbs. Lean ground beef or turkey
1 tsp. sugar
2 clove garlic, chopped
1 ½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. dried oregano
½ tsp. basil
½ tsp. parsley
½ tsp. garlic powder
Dash of crushed red pepper flakes
28 ½ oz. can tomatoes
6 oz. can tomato paste
Pint of part skim ricotta cheese
2 eggs
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
½ cup Parmesan or Romano cheese, grated

1) In a heavy bottomed sauce pan over medium heat add olive oil and onion & garlic. Sauté onion until soft.
2) Add meat, oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Cook until meat is browned throughout.
3) Add Tomatoes and tomato paste and one cup of water; turn heat up to medium high.
4) Bring to a boil then turn heat to medium-low and simmer for 1 hour to 1.5 hours, stirring occasionally.
5) In a small bowl combine ricotta cheese, egg, parsley and garlic powder. Whisk thoroughly and refrigerate until you are ready to use.
6) Prepare noodles according to package directions if you are using standard lasagna noodles, otherwise skip this step for the no bake pasta.
7) Spray a 9 x 13 casserole with non-stick cooking spray (like Pam)
8) Ladle a thin layer of sauce on the bottom.
9) Place noodles across the bottom of the pan, it is okay to overlap.
10) Spread 1/3 of the ricotta cheese mixture over the noodle (it doesn’t have to be perfect).
11) Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over top.
12) Cover with meat & sauce (not too much sauce, use a slotted spoon)
13) Repeat noodles, ricotta, Parmesan and meat sauce twice.
14) Finish with a layer of noodles, sauce and then top with the mozzarella cheese.
15) Spray tin foil with cooking spray and cover casserole tightly.
16) Bake at 350 degrees for one hour.
17) Let lasagna rest for 15 minutes before cutting & serving.
18) Serve with extra sauce on the side.

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