Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Staff Lasagna and Dressing

In addition to the gazpacho, I brought some lasagna along to whatever family gathering where I though lots of people would eat it (i'm thinking Father's Day, but not positive).  Despite being the "staff meal," it still required a lot more work than *I* put into an everyday meal!

 Mis - look at all those ingredients!

Now, part of the extensive work involved had to do with making my own tomato sauce.  To be honest, i'm not sure if I had ever done this before (there isn't much of a point, since marina affects me more than any other tomato product aside from ketchup).

First up, I cut little x's and blanched a trillion tomatoes (notice how I didn't bother taking the stickers off?  It was because I knew I had to peel them, so why bother!)

There are no peeled tomato pictures because my hands were burning.  My sister recently told me she broke out in hives from eating half a slice of tomato.  I know she breaks out in hives from touching ketchup (something hard for her to avoid being a waitress; I've avoided touching ketchup since hearing this).  I'm pretty sure the burning hands were related to the whole allergy thing, which means its getting worse.  Boo!

Burning hands aside, I cut them into chunks.

Next, I sweat some onions down with some tomato paste.  It smelled heavenly.

Then, I tossed all of the peeled, seeded, chopped tomatoes into the mix, and cooked those down until it was sauce.  It took a long time to get something that smelled right - like 1 1/2 hours.  This may have been faster if I could have tasted it, though, since its a lot easier to adjust seasoning with tastebuds than, say, your nose.

While the sauce was cooking, I stirred some eggs and ricotta together.  I've made a lot of lasagna (mostly with white sauce instead of marinara), but i've never added eggs before.  I think that i'm going to use this in future lasagnas, since it made the ricotta a lot easier to spread evenly (plus, i'm pretty sure it held better once it was cooked).

Finally, lasagna!  Noodles, sauce, ricotta mix, and oodles of mozzerella - the way lasagna should be.

Because the sauce took so much longer than I guestimated, I was really in a rush and forgot to take a picture of it done.  Even worse (or better, says my body), we had two sets of plans, so we ran out before people had started eating -- so neither me or the hubby got to try it!  I heard it was delicious.  

Oh, yeah, what else... I made salad dressing and brought salad.

Here are the ingredients...

But nothing beyond that, whoops.  It was standard salad dressing - blend everything, add oil very slowly to emulsify.  I'm pretty sure the vitamix made fast dressing out of it.  It was good, but nothing to write home about.

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