Tag Archives: lasagna

Another Fun Double Date Night In

Tonight was another random, last minute, double date night in. Our friends Leigh and Nate’s anniversary was yesterday, so I sent them an email and told them we should get together again soon. They suggested tonight, so we said sure! They came over for a healthful Lasagna (we use the recipe on the back of the Barilla No Bake Lasagna noodles box and substitute ground turkey for the beef/sausage; plus, every time it says to add meat, add meat AND veggies–we used 1 c. frozen spinach, 1 small zucchini, 1 small yellow squash and about 8 chopped baby carrots). Plus they brought garlic bread and we made a salad (see below).

Green Salad with Carrots in the center, surrounded by a Caprese Salad of roma tomatoes, mozzarella, capers and chopped fresh basil. Drizzle with olive oil and your favorite vinegar and sprinkle with salt & pepper or your favorite seasoning grinder. Yum!

For dessert, we had a rich cup of French Roast coffee and Double Chocolate Torte (gluten-free vegan recipe from Oh She Glows). Even the dessert is full of good-for-you stuff, don’t knock it before you’ve tried it. Seconds will be had…guilt-free! Delicious chilled, at room temperature, or my favorite way–frozen!

picture courtesy of Oh She Glows

After dessert, they ended up teaching us two new games. If you hadn’t noticed, games are one of our favorite things to do. We played a lot of games during our dating years, especially Settles of Catan, Ticket to Ride, Scrabble and Dutch Blitz. We even had game nights that we co-hosted weekly during our first couple of years of marriage. Six years later, the frequency of games has decreased, but we still enjoy board and card games quite a bit.

Last time Nate and Leigh were here, they taught us Dominion, and it became a fast favorite, to the point we “had” to buy it and have played it for date nights multiple times since then (good for 2 players). Tonight, they taught us Small World and 7 Wonders–both are very good games!

“Risk”-esque game of conquering territories. Only 9 turns per player, but has a bit more of a learning curve than 7 Wonders and takes a bit more time with strategizing.

A fast-paced, easy to learn game for 3+ players, with multiple strategies and outcomes.

Thank God for like-minded friends and lasting memories of fun nights together! And Happy Anniversary, Nate and Leigh!

A Fresh Twist on Classic Lasagna

A fresh take on a classic Italian dish. Instead of lasagna noodles, we’re using whole wheat spiral pasta. We’re also using a very lean ground beef (or try ground turkey to reduce the fat some) and add in your favorite veggies. 40 Minutes to Prepare and Cook.

Ingredients

1 box (13.25 oz) Healthy Harvest Pasta, Rotini
1 can (26.5 oz) Hunt’s Spaghetti Sauce, Traditional
1 container (15 oz) Ricotta Cheese, Park Skim Milk
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded Fat-free Mozzarella
1 large egg, beaten
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 pound very lean ground beef or turkey
1 cup Summer Squash, sliced
1 cup Broccoli, chopped

Instructions
Prep:
Preheat over to 375F. 
Brown 1 lb. ground beef in 1 T. olive oil.
Meanwhile, boil pasta for 10 min. and drain.
Steam vegetables (about 10 minutes) and set aside.
Beat 1 egg, add 3 cheeses and garlic and mix thoroughly. Set aside.

Assemble: Layer all ingredients in lightly greased lasagna pan or 9×13 pan. Begin with a light layer of sauce, followed by half the noodles, 1/3 of the cheese, 1/2 of the vegetables, 1/2 of the beef.
Repeat process, using half of the remaining sauce. Add final layer of sauce and cheese. 

Bake at 375F for 20 minutes or until cheese is golden brown and bubbly. Enjoy!

Number of Servings: 12

Weekend Glimpse

Well, I’ve made it through my first week of classes and full-time work. It’s going to be a busy load, but I’m thankful to have Bryan’s support. He cleaned the bathroom and even went to the grocery store today for me.

Breakfast was blackberry quinoa. Snack was figs with ricotta and honey-cinnamon butter. Lunch was a small bagel with organic cream cheese. It was a long day at work. But I got to look forward to one of my good college buddies coming to stay with us for the weekend! While I anticipated her arrival, I straightened up the house and made a big lasagna. While the lasagna baked, I did the XStretch video in preparation for my first 5K tomorrow!

The lasagna was delicious! I made half with all-natural ground chuck for Bryan and half with veggies for me (organic mushrooms, Vidalia onion, and green pepper and summer squash from Saturday’s market basket). I used 1 jar of Earth Fare’s Organic Portobello Mushroom spaghetti sauce and 1 jar of Muir Glen’s Organic Mushroom Marinara Sauce. For the cheese, I used 1/2 large container fat-free ricotta cheese, salt, pepper, and filled the second 1/2 of the container loosely with freshly grated parmesan cheese, and mixed in 1 all-natural egg.

Dinner’s done. I had some good catch-up time with Meg, though she’s feeling sick and tired after traveling today. 😦 Bryan’s friend Josh came over for dessert and now he and Bryan are chatting. Meg is in bed and I am heading to my bed momentarily. I need a good night’s rest before tomorrow’s run. We have to be at the race at 8AM. Start time is 9AM. It should be a fun morning! Bryan’s even coming to cheer me on, even if it rains.

Then I have a couple errands to do and Bryan’s probably helping photograph a wedding. At 2, he and the guys are coming over to watch soccer while my friend April and I address baby shower invites for my cousin! They’re adorable! I can’t wait to see them printed!

Saturday evening I need to study and put my schedule in my daytimer with all my assignments and due dates. Then hopefully I get at least an hour to chill and maybe hang with Meg some more (she has plans all day on Saturday). Then she’s coming to church with us on Sunday a.m. before heading home. Meg was my prayer partner in college. I’ve missed our prayer times.

Well, all, it’s past my bedtime. I’ll let you know how the race goes…even if it’s just a comment on this post. Good night!