Thursday, July 26, 2012

Caprese lasagna

Hey, you guys. Heyyyyyy youuuuuu guyyyyyyyys! Hopefully you got the Goonies reference there and didn't think I was yelling at you on this lovely, less than 100 degrees for once, almost to the end of the week Thursday afternoon. Because I wasn't yelling...not yet anyway. If you don't make this soon, you deserve to be yelled at though. And punched in the arm real hard with a ring on...yeah, that should let you know how serious I am about this.

Amanda has been doing a fine job of taste-testing her way around Pinterest during this pregnancy and letting me know when she finds a solid recipe that I absolutely need to try. Her recommendations have always been spot on, so I know very well to get right on it when she throws a link my way and tells me it's heavenly. Amazingly, I read Iowa Girls Eats every single day. I'm more commited to her than I am most facets of my life...I won't even be offended if you quit coming here and start going over there to drool over her photos each day, they're insane and make me want to lick my screen or find out where she lives in Iowa and go sit on her steps like a homeless child who needs some food until she feeds me each evening.  I saw this posted a while ago....but didn't think there could really be much improvement to my standard lasagna, and it looked like more steps (making your own sauce and all) so i didn't want to mess with it. For the love of pasta....mess with it! It's really not as hard as it looks, and it is out of this flipping world light, lovely, all things glorious pasta that will be devoured as if people have no stomach bottoms when you make it.

I really didn't think Main Man was going to know with his hatred for the fresh basil tasting too "planty". He did though. He killed it. He went all "we will eradicate the earth of this pasta (or at least this kitchen)" and told me it was a make again!  Angels sang in the distance as this is not something I would have projected to be up his alley...maybe his alley is changing?? A girl can hope :)

3/4lb lasagna noodles (I used the no bake noodles)
extra virgin olive oil
3/4lb hot turkey Italian sausage (I used 1 lb lean ground italian turkey sausage)
2 Tablespoons butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 Tablespoons flour
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cups 2% milk
salt & pepper
4 roma tomatoes, thinly sliced
8 basil leaves, chopped
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook lasagna noodles in a very large pot of salted, boiling water until just under al dente. Drain and return to the pot. Add a splash of extra virgin olive oil and gently stir to coat the noodles.
  2. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Squeeze sausage out of its casing and cook while breaking up until no longer pink. Remove to a plate and set aside.
  3. In the same skillet, melt butter, then add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Sprinkle in flour, then whisk to combine and cook for 30 more seconds.
  4. Slowly pour in chicken broth a few Tablespoons at a time, whisking to break up any lumps. Continue pouring and whisking until mixture is smooth. Pour in milk and whisk to combine. Season with salt & pepper.
  5. Switch to a spatula and stir sauce until thick and bubbly, about 5 minutes. Pour into a bowl with a spout, and set aside.
  6. Spray the bottom and sides of a 9×13″ baking dish with non-stick spray. Pour 1/4 cup sauce into the bottom, then spread evenly with a spatula. Place 3 lasagna noodles in the bottom, then top with 1/3 of the tomatoes, 1/3 of the basil, 1/3 of the cooked turkey sausage, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, and 1/3 of the remaining sauce. Repeat 2 more times, for a total of three layers.
  7. Cover baking dish with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake for 15 more minutes, or until cheese is golden brown and sauce is bubbly. Let sit 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

The juice in my horribly staged photo is from the tomato cucumber salad that is my absolute favorite thing to have in the fridge and pick on all week in the Summer. We are being attacked by cucumbers at the moment, and each day I come home from work I fully expect them to have grown all the way up to and into the house to get into the air conditioner. That hasn't happened yet. But we have more cucumbers than I've ever seen in real life in one place this salad has been a fridge staple all year. I just keep adding cucumbers and tomatoes and bread to the juice and it seems to only get better and better and better and...well, you get the point. I am in love with this stuff.

Anywho...I hope your week is going quickly and you get a chance to put something from this post in your mouth soon so you can be as happy as I am in life. Happy Thursday, all!

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  1. I am a huge fan of Iowa Girls Eats and this recipe was a huge hit in my house too! It's hard to explain to people how good this dish really is. It will be a staple for us in the summer since it's light, fresh, and so good.

    1. Yes, it seems so simple, but then it's amaaaaazing! I can't wait to make it again!

  2. Looks delicious! Loving your blog! Xo