Meatball Lasagna

This is the easiest lasagna I think I’ve ever made. I used jar sauce, some fresh herbs, roasted vegetables, frozen beef meatballs and no bake lasagna noodles. Yum yum yum! The boys at the table had two helpings!

Meatball Lasagna
1 box no boil lasagna noodles
2 cups frozen beef meatballs
1 bunch fresh Italian leaf parsley
2 tablespoons basil
1 green pepper
1 sweet onion
1 large garlic clove
1/2 cup mushrooms
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cup grated mozzarella
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
Salt and pepper to taste

Begin by coarsely chopping the pepper, onion, garlic and mushrooms. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast at 425° for about 20 minutes.

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Mix together in a small bowl the ricotta, mozzarella, 1/4 cup of Parmesan, parsley and basil. Set aside.

Place a third of the sauce on the bottom of a 9×13 glass dish. Add the roasted vegetables on top and then a double layer of the pasta noodles. Use another third of the sauce, the meatballs and the cheese mixture. Finish off by laying the remaining noodles, sauce and the last 1/4 cup Parmesan.

Cover and bake at 425° for 50 minutes. Remove the foil and bake uncovered for an additional 10 minutes.

 

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Broccoli, White Bean & Portobello Side

The group was able to reconvene again for another Family Dinner! Of all dinners this is one where the compliments were supreme. Maybe everyone was hungry? Or, maybe I am really that wonderful a cook?

In addition to a basic tossed salad and pork tenderloin, I decided to come up with some kind of a side. Not wanting to commit to one entirely of starch, I decided that some white cannelleni beans (also known as “great northern beans”) would help to pump up the volume in vegetables. Definitely received some oohs and aahs over this one!

Broccoli, White Bean & Portobello Side

1 Large Vidalia onion
3 Cups broccoli florets
2 Cups mini bella mushrooms
1 Can drained & rinsed cannelleni beans

3 TB olive oil
1 TB red pepper flakes
1/4 Cup basil pesto
Salt & pepper to taste

Slice onion into thin rounds. Cover with olive oil and seasonings placing into a saucepan over medium heat. Cook onions until softened and reduce heat to a simmer. Allow the onions to caramelize over low heat for about 20-30 minutes.

In a separate pan, bring water to a boil to blanch the broccoli. After the broccoli is just barely fork tender, drain and cool in an ice water bath.

Once onions have reached a golden brown color, toss in mushrooms, broccoli, beans and basil pesto. Serve immediately. Voila!

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