Archives for the month of: May, 2015

Italian Lasagna with Red Sauce Recipe – I took an Italian cooking class and learned how to make red sauce, and different types of lasagna. The instructor gave us recipes and some cooking tips and then we got to make some and bring them home. YUM.

This was my favorite:

Best lasagna recipe ever - includes freezer instructions - Not sure why but they always taste better the next day as leftovers!

I have since made a bunch of these, and froze some for later. Gotta love freezer meals!

If you want, you could use ground turkey instead; or even vegetables for a meatless option (just saute zucchini, broccoli, and carrots, and use them in place of the meat) and add a little pesto to the cheese mixture.

I used two 8×8″ pans, but if you want to make one batch just use a 9×13″ pan with the same recipe.

When I made the two 8×8 lasagnas, I baked one and froze the other for later.

WHAT YOU NEED:

  • 2 lbs. ground beef (or Italian sausage; or a mixture of both)
  • Red sauce (see recipe below)
  • 15 oz. whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups (or more if you’re a cheese lover) shredded mozzarella
  • 1/2 c. grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 package (approximately 12 oz) oven ready “no cook” lasagna noodles
  • Fresh Italian parsley, to taste, chopped

WHAT YOU DO:

Brown meat in a skillet and drain grease. Stir in the red sauce and heat through.

Combine ricotta cheese, grated Pecorino Romano, eggs, and parsley in a mixing bowl and set aside.

Evenly spread the meat sauce in a the bottom of a 9×13″ pan OR two 8×8″ pans. Layer lasagna noodles on top, then spread on some of the cheese mixture and cover with meat sauce. Top with shredded mozzarella, and repeat for one or two more layers.

If preparing lasagna right away: Bake in preheated oven at 375ºF for 30-40 minutes until cheese is golden (cover with foil for the first 20-25 minutes or so then uncover until done).

If freezing for later: Wrap unbaked lasagna in foil/plastic wrap and label. Freeze. To prepare, thaw and bake at 375ºF for 30-40 minutes until cheese is golden (cover with foil for the first 20-25 minutes or so then uncover until done).

Italian Red Sauce - so easy and fresh and homemade - includes an awesome lasagna recipe - I make giant batches and freeze for later

FOR THE RED SAUCE:

  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh Italian parsley
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups tomato puree
  • 1 cup crushed Italian tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon oregano
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • sea salt, to taste
  • pinch of brown sugar (weird I know!)

Heat EVOO in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and saute until translucent for 8 minutes or so. Add parsley and garlic and cook just enough to release fragrance (don’t let the garlic burn).

Add red wine and cook for approximately 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, basil, oregano, red pepper, salt, and brown sugar.

Simmer briskly until reduced to a sauce-like consistency and stir occasionally to keep the sauce from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

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Spinach Stuffed Turkey Burgers Recipe - only 225 calories and 9 grams of fat

Here are some turkey burgers I made – stuffed with spinach, garlic, oats, and lemon juice. So easy! You just mash up all the ingredients and form it into patties. I used one pound of ground turkey and made 4 burgers but they were huge, so next time I will probably make 5 or 6.

WHAT YOU NEED:

  • 16 oz. ground turkey 93% lean
  • 3 cups fresh baby spinach, torn into small pieces
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • pepper, to taste

WHAT YOU DO:

  • In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients. Form into patties. (The nutrition info below is for servings of 4 patties)
  • Spray a skillet with cooking spray, or mist with olive oil, and heat over medium heat.
  • Cook until skillet until cooked through and browned, approximately 8 minutes on each side.

Estimated Nutrition Information: Per Serving (recipe makes 4 servings)

  • 225 calories
  • 9.9 grams fat
  • 131 mg cholesterol
  • 8.9 grams carbohydrates
  • 1 gram fiber

Here’s an easy and delicious smoothie you can make with just four ingredients: a Berry Banana Breakfast Smoothie. It’s just unsweetened vanilla almond milk, frozen banana chunks, frozen fruit, and quick oats. Also there are only 3 WW pts+ per serving!

Berry Banana Breakfast smoothie - just 4 ingredients and only 3 WW+ points

WHAT YOU NEED:

  • 8 oz. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/2 c. frozen berries (I used Trader Joe’s Very Cherry Berry Blend)
  • 1/2 of a banana, frozen (peel and cut into chunks before freezing)
  • 1/2 c. quick oats

WHAT YOU DO:

Combine all ingredients in blender and mix together. Makes two servings.

Berry Breakfast Smoothie Recipe - just 4 ingredients in the blender

Estimated Nutrition Information / Per Serving:

  • 120 calories
  • 2.6 g fat
  • 0 cholesterol
  • 81.2 mg sodium
  • 22 g carbohydrates
  • 4.2 g fiber
  • 3.4 g protein