Thanks to the interest and ingenuity of my youngest daughter, I actually have something to blog about for today’s entry in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. Moments ago, this was our conversation:
Me: Ugh! I still have to figure out something to blog about today.
Daughter: I – Italian food! You can blog about that great lasagna you made the other night!
This is probably a much better idea than what I was considering: insects. It was going to kind of be a justification for my son’s attempt to convince his teacher that he should be allowed to use Insects as the I food on his CHRISTMAS acronym food art activity. He was inspired by a television show he’d seen and we’d discussed just days before – Animal Planet or Discovery Channel – one of those shows. But the teacher was not impressed, so he had to use boring old ice cream. If you’re feeling curious, adventuresome, and iron-stomached, check out this website: Girl Meets Bug. I haven’t added any to the lasagna, but feel free to experiment!
Classic Lasagna With Italian Turkey Sausage
1 lb. sweet Italian turkey sausage
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 cup finely chopped carrot
2 tsp minced garlic
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 28 oz. cans whole tomatoes (puree in blender, undrained)
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp pepper, divided
1/2 tsp salt
30 oz. fat-free ricotta cheese
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1/3 cup minced fresh parsley
15 lasagna noodles (or enough for 3 layers in a 9×13 lasagna pan)
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Cook, rinse and drain noodles. Set aside. In a large saucepan cook sausage, onion, carrot, garlic and pepper flakes over medium heat until meat is no longer pink and vegetables are tender. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, oregano, basil and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer (uncovered) for 40-45 minutes, stirring occasionally. In a separate bowl combine ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, egg, parsley, and remaining pepper. Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish. Layer one-third of the noodles, one-fourth of the meat sauce and 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers twice. Top with remaining sauce and Parmesan. Cover and bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with remaining mozzarella. Return to oven and bake uncovered 10 minutes or until cheese is lightly golden. (12 servings)