I remember trips to Maine and those great Sunday dinners of Rose’s. Her smile would grow if you ask for seconds and with one hand holding the edge of your plate making retreat impossible she would pile on the pasta, lasagna, meatballs…..and when you could hardly hold the plate up then she was satisfied you had ample seconds. Well this Christmas I made lasagna in her honor but added some vegetables since Lyn batted her eyes and asked do you think…… I never came up with those picture perfect lasagna but it always taste good.
- 1 box of lasagna noodles ( this time I cheated and used the oven ready ones)
- 1 container (32 oz.) Dragone Part-Skim Ricotta cheese
- 1 large zucchini slice very thin lengthwise – I used a mandolin
- I carrot julienned and roughly chopped
- 1 egg, beaten
- About 1-1/2 tsp. dried oregano
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp. pepper
- 1 package (16 oz.) Mozzarella cheese, shredded
- ¾ cup grated Parmesan Cheese
- Pasta sauce -3-5 cups
Heat oven to 375
Combine the ricotta, egg, oregano, salt and pepper.
Add 3 cups of Mozzarella and ½ cup of Parmesan cheese mix thoroughly
Spread one cup of sauce on bottom of glass 13*9 pan
Place one layer of noodles – I laid them across since the fit nicely
Cover with a layer of cheese mixture
Layer of zucchini and all the carrot
Cheese and sauce
I guess in whatever order you really want to.
Cover tightly with foil
Bake for about an hour minutes until sauce is bubbly
Cover with the remaining cheeses and bake until melted about 10 minutes uncovered
I also finished off with 2 minutes under the broiler I like that very slight crunchiness
Cover loosely and let sit for at least 15 minutes
I served with sauce, meatballs, chicken sausage and salad with 18 year old balsamic vinegar mmmmmmm anything is better with 18 year old balsamic vinegar
I loved Mac & Cheese since I was a kid. I can remember in my teens making the Kraft boxed and thinking I was a great chef mixing powered cheese(?) with the freshly boiled tiny little elbow macaroni’s and milk or water. I graduated to the deluxe version that had the cheese(?) as sauce in the can. I was in Mac & Cheese heaven watching Bruin’s hockey a devouring a whole box. It was not until I was transferred to Dallas with 20th Century Fox that I met Paul and Clair who introduced me to Mac & Cheese made from scratch and real chesses. I was sold.
This time I made it with white cheddar and America cheeses, but normally I like a sharp orange cedar cheese. You can use many kinds of cheeses which I have, so experiment. I have found at least to my liking that cheeses that get stringy when melted (i.e. mozzarella) do work but everyone has different taste and who am I to say…..
Mac & Cheese
- 1 pound penne, elbow or cavatappi (corkscrew) macaroni.
- 1/3 cup whole wheat flour.
- 4 cups milk, heated.
- 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded extra sharp Cheddar cheese.
- 2 cups finely chopped American cheese.
- Remember you can use more or all cheddar if you want.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- Tabasco or hot pepper sauce.
- ¼ freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
In a large pot bring lightly salted water to boil and cook macaroni and cook aldente. Drain well.
Preheat the oven to 350◦ with rack in center. Butter 13”x 9” baking dish, alternatively use a deep 4 quart casserole.
Melt the butter in medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour. Slowly whisk in the milk. Bring to simmer, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 5 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup each of Cheddar and American cheese. Season with salt, pepper and tabasco sauce.
Combine the rest of the Cheddar and American cheese. Spread ½ of the macaroni on the bottom of baking dish. Sprinkle with slight more than half the combined cheeses and then ½ the sauce. Add the remaining of the macaroni top with the cheese and then sauce. Now sprinkle the graded parmesan cheese over the top. If using the 4 quart casserole 1/3 of macaroni, ½ of combined cheeses, 1/3 of the sauce. Repeat with another 1/3 of macaroni and remaining cheese and ½ the sauce. Finish with the removing macaroni and sauce and then sprinkle the grated parmesan cheese. I prefer the baking dish it is easier to make single servings and you can freeze these for a quick, meal or side. (Add a little water when re-heating in microwave.
Bake until bubbly and golden brown around the edges. About 30 minutes.