Thursday, January 20, 2011

Don't ever make lasagna with cheddar cheese (D2)

So my husband is a chef. I know, lucky me right? The funny thing is, I love to cook too and I'm damn good at it. But he does most of the cooking, and that shit works for me too.

Last week I get home from work to smell something-a-cookin' as I open the front door. He proceeds to tell me that he's made a lasagna. So I wonder to myself, "Self, do we have mozzarella? Do we have ricotta?" Me thinks not. So I ask him how me made a lasgna when I know we don't have the ingredients?. "Well, I just used the cheese that we had in the fridge". Ooooo this is gonna get interesting.

So we sit down to dinner and this oily, dry noodle thing in a lasagna dish appears before me. I realize he's used cheddar cheese without cutting it with another cheese to change the chemistry of the melting habits and the omission of oil. Go with me on this one. I'm no cheese scientist - but I have seen melted cheddar on its own... lots of oil... and melted cheddar with some other kind of cheese.... delicious goodness. Ok, this story is getting long I'll wrap it up.

Anyhoo --- no ricotta, no mozzarella, hardly any red sauce does not a lasagna make. This basically tasted like a cheeseburger with noodles. Crazy enough? We ate b/c it still tasted good - but don't call this shit lasagna.

I love being right like any other woman and I love winning. So over the weekend I bought the ingredients for a real lasagna and made it on Tuesday. Shit was ridiculous. Even the chef said so. BAM! I win!

Shit you're gonna need:

-9 lasagna noodles. Don't cook the whole fucking box unless you're making 3 lasagnas, k?

-Small thingy of ricotta cheese. If you use cottage cheese I'll come to your house and smack you around. Gross.

-Mozarella cheese slices and a bag of shredded mozzarella. A lot of cheese, I know. it gets better

-Bag of Shredded Parmasean - yes, they sell this not in a shaker container.

- 1 egg

- 1 lb-ish of ground beef or turkey

- jar of spaghetti sauce. - I use the super expensive Raos sauce b/c its fucking awesome and tastes right and requires no effort on my part except coughing up $8.99 for the jar. If you wanna use Ragu or Prego or make your own - get crazy and do it.

- Italian Seasonsing

Shit you're gonna do

Cook up your meat in a plug in skillet or big ass pan in the stove. Sprinkle some salt and the Italian seasoning on that meat and let it cook - I believe they call this "browning". In a mixing bowl, plop out the ricotta from its container, crack an egg in there, pour in 1/2 the bag of Parmesan cheese, and like 1/3 of the shredded mozzarella bag. I don't measure, I eyeball and you should too. Sprinkle some Eye-talian seasoning in there too - why not?

Now stick your lasagna noodles on the stove in a boiling pot of agua and let all that magic happen at once. Oh, and turn your oven on to like 350.

Once you meat is browned, throw in your jar of sauce and let that simmer for a minute. Once your noodles are done, drain them.

Take out your glass lasagna dish and spray with a tiny bit of kitchen KY. Then let's start layering...

Bottom layer: 3 noodles, then your ricotta mixture, then sauce/meat, then mozzarella slices. Then repeat... once you're out of stuff and you're on the last step use the shredded mozzarella as the very last layer and maybe throw the rest of the shredded Parmesan on there too. Get crazy with the cheese whiz, folks.

And Voila! You have yourself a REAL lasagna. Stick that baby in the oven for 30 minutes uncovered. It'll be done with you see it a-bubblin and all melty and shit.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Chili Cheese Homemade Hamburger Helper. Just admit that you get lazy too.

Alright, I gotta give super props to this website for this recipe.

This chick has about nine different versions of homemade hamburger helper (HHH). But the one I adapted was the Chili Cheese. And it worked. I didn’t actually give my family any other option. This ain’t fucking Denny’s. Eat it…eat it and like it!

I now make this shit about once a week. It’s easy, it’s fucking fantastic as leftovers and my kids eat it. It’s the ménage á trios of cooking.

Shit you’re gonna need:

1 small onion chopped (I’ve also been known to add half of a chopped green pepper in here because I needed to use it. My kids had a shit fit when they saw little bits of green, so I don’t do that anymore, but I wanted to give you the option)

1 lb of ground beef (again, if you don’t have balls, feel free to use ground turkey)

1 cup of hot water (I didn’t heat mine up. Used it straight from the tap. Made no difference.)

1 ½ cups of milk (regular milk. Don’t use the fake blue shit)

½ cup of sour cream

1 ½ cups of elbow macaroni


1 tbs. of corn starch

1 tbs. of chili powder

2 tsp of garlic salt

1 tsp of sugar

½ tsp. of paprika

1 cup of cheese (Come on ya’ll…you know me by now…you know I used two cups)

Shit you’re gonna do:

Brown up your onion and your ground beef. I personally rinse and drain it after cooking to get any fat that might be left on it. Not that I think it’ll matter since I use butter on everything, but at least I can tell my cardiologist that I tried. If you rinse it, put it back in the pan and add your water, milk and sour cream. Stir and then add your macaroni. Nothing fancy here people. I’ll tell you what is fancy though…manchego cheese dipped in honey. It’s just like a wedding; expensive as fuck but so freaking worth it. Even if your wedding day was the first day of turkey hunting season and your in-laws wore their hunting gear there, but don’t worry, my Aunt Tom got over it.

In a separate small bowl, mix all your spices together and then add them to your beef mixture. Cover and let this shit cook for about 12 minutes or until your pasta is done. You’ll want to stir it every now and then so you don’t get shit stuck to the bottom of the pan. Once it’s done, stir in your cheese, and holy macaroni (literally), your shit’s done. I personally shovel this into my mouth while hovering over the stove with the same spoon I just stirred with. But that’s just me. And that’s just another option for you.

Fyi…don’t fucking rip my head off when you taste this and it needs more salt. Because it probably will. Just settin’ ya’ up…