So many things to tell you dear readers!!
I’ve recently been MIA due to a new gig I’ve picked up. In an effort to pay off my student loans before I’m 60 (yes that’s a gross exaggeration) and to stimulate my mind & spirit (since the cube has become dull & repetitive, after 6 years, that tends to happen, ugh) I have a part-time job now at wait for it… Williams Sonoma! YAY!
I used to go in there on weekends, and just stroll around the store, touching fabulous cookware, dreaming about the day I might finally register for a KitchenAid Stand Mixer, a set of All-Clad (yeah, right), or and endless collection of cookbooks. (That I would most likely only peruse for fun and continue to Google recipes much like I do now.) Being the week before Christmas I’ve been super busy between the cube and the pre-holiday retail rush. I’ve been there every night this week until 11 or later. That means not much time for cooking! It also means that hopefully I’ll have some fun gadgets to share with you or experiences at the store. And, it means that I have to be very strategic in my meal planning.
This week I made a lasagna for dinner Monday, and to have the leftovers for lunches. For a quick dinner each night before heading to the mall I’ve heated up some squash soup that I made a batch of a couple of weeks ago and froze.
Onto the main event: Lasagna Bolognese. I didn’t intend for it to be gluten free- but, my roommate is GF and I always feel bad making things that I can’t share with her. And, by default, Whole Foods seemed to be out of any other kind of lasagna noodle that night. The DeBole’s No-Boil Rice Lasagna noodles worked perfectly! Just make sure to handle your grocery bags with care or you’ll end up with more pieces than sheets… oops.
In the end it worked out because I used a smaller, oval casserole dish and had to use the broken pieces to fit.
For the main sauce I used the last and final frozen container of the big fat bolognese. Dang that was a lot of sauce! I was racking my brain for what else to use it for- I’d done just the sauce & pasta, stuffed peppers- lasagna was the last iteration I could come up with! (Now if that isn’t a 25 cent word, I don’t know what is.)
I of course Googled lasagna bolognese and lot of folks use a bechamel sauce as well. I wasn’t feeling that adventurous, and, if it was going to be gluten-free I would have had to make substitutions. Instead, I mashed together a few recipes and came up with a layer of ricotta mixed with one egg (to help bind), thawed frozen chopped spinach, chopped crimini mushrooms, (more veggies to off-set the cheese), and shredded mozzarella.
I lost track of the order of my layers, but it went something like this:
Sauce, noodles, cheese
Noodles, sauce, cheese, noodles, sauce, mozzarella. (I think.)
Into the oven it went!
Now that is a thing of beauty. Mangia!