February 27, 2009

Trial and Error

Last night, I set out to make another Rachael Ray mag recipe with the best of intentions... wait, let me rephrase that - Last night I used another Rachael Ray recipe as inspiration for dinner.... that's better. I think first I will explain (and show pictures) of what I did; then we can go over what went wrong.

Deconstructed Lasagna

  • 8 Lasagna Noodles
  • 1 lb. Ground Beef
  • 1 Clove Garlic, minced
  • 1/4 finely mined Onion
  • 1/2 cup shredded Carrot
  • 1/4 cup diced Green Bell Pepper
  • 1 can Rotel, Original
  • 4 Tb. Ricotta
  • Shredded Parmesan, Mozzarella, and/or Cheddar Cheese.

  1. Saute garlic and onion in a tablespoon of olive oil until slightly caramelized. Add bell pepper and carrot (I also threw in a handful of spinach finely chopped & some mushrooms) and saute until soft. Add ground beef; cook thoroughly. Work to break up meat into small chunks. Add entire can of Rotel; mix well, working off little caramelized bits from the bottom of the pan.
  2. While beef is cooking bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Break lasagna noodles into smaller chunks. Boil until soft; strain and set aside.
  3. I then put 2 Tb. Ricotta cheese into each of our bowls and added a couple tablespoons Alfredo sauce (I thought creamy would be a nice touch) and a pinch of basil. Next add a few of the lasagna noodles, then 1/3 cup meat sauce. {I have about a cup leftover in my fridge.} Mix until thoroughly combined. Sprinkle with desired cheese and serve hot.

Alrighty.... so....

  • First - didn't follow the directions! For the first run I should have followed the directions exactly, THEN changes can be made the NEXT time! (For example - the Rotel. Should have used plan stewed tomatoes, but I had Rotel and in my quest to empty the pantry it was used instead. It made the dish a little too spicy.)
  • Second - the noodles. I was very rushed and did not take the time to break the noodles into smaller chunks. The wide sections of lasagna made the sauce very difficult to stick. Next time I plan to use macaroni, ziti, or even some Rotini would be fun.
  • Third - Cheese. Lots more cheese.
  • Fourth - The Alfredo sauce was a personal touch that I would actually keep. I liked the creamy element it brought to the dish. I think a variation of this recipe could be keeping the meat sauce the same but making lasagna roll-ups. Cover the roll-ups with Alfredo sauce and plenty of shredded cheese then bake until bubbly....
  • Fifth & Last - Don't put myself in a situation where I feel rushed to try a new recipe. Experiments needs some time & attention.

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Songbirdtiff said...

More cheese. The answer is always more cheese. :)

Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) said...

Hi Kristen,
Usually when I first make a recipe, it turns out great...then the next time is when I managed to mess it up! LOL This looks yummy...no Rotel, though, huh? Regarding my cheese dip, I usually use a variety of crackers...what ever I have on hand. I like to buy those long skinny kind that come in herb flavor and plain...know that isn't helping much but I'm drawing a blank on who makes them. They are shaped like cheese straws. But truly, just about any type cracker would do...it's good on everything! :-)
Thanks for sharing your RRay recipe! :-) Susan

Anonymous said...

I do this as well, rushing is never a good thing for me either. I once rushed and forgot to add baking powder to a batch of cupcakes and ruined the whole thing, ugh.

Shauna said...

I am new here! What a great blog :)