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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Dishwasher Lasagna

***  FIRST AND FOREMOST ***  This is NOT my recipe and is copied directly from  I'm in the middle of cooking the World's Best Lasagna from Allrecipes and wanted to see how to avoid cooking the lasagna noodles ahead of time because I'm tripling the recipe and I found this.  If anyone tries it, please let me know how it turns out.  Sounds DISS-CUSS-TING to me!!  However, the the World's Best Lasagna truly is the best lasagna I have ever had!

Shock your dinner guest with this fun and unique way to prepare everyone's favorite Italian dish. Do your dishes, cook a meal, and give your guests something to talk about when you make lasagna in your dishwasher.

  • 1/2 jar of favorite pasta sauce
  • 3 fresh lasagna pasta sheets (or 'oven ready' lasagna sheets)
  • 1/2 16.8 oz container of Ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 package of mixed grated cheese
  • 1 cup freshly chopped spinach
  • Garlic
  • Onion flakes
  • Fine herbs


  1. 1
    Cut three 24-inch x 12-inch sheets of aluminum foil and lie flat.
  2. 2
    Take first lasagna sheet and place flat it in the center of the aluminum foil.
  3. 3
    Spread a thick layer of pasta sauce over the sheet, covering the entire surface.
  4. 4
    In a bowl, mix the ricotta cheese and spinach and layer half the mixture on top of the tomato sauce.
  5. 5
    Layer desired amount of grated cheese, along with fine herbs, garlic, and onion flakes.
  6. 6
    Top with second lasagna sheet and repeat all layers.
  7. 7
    Cut third lasagna sheet into strips about 3/8-inch wide and layer on top of lasagna in a criss cross fashion. Top with herbs and spices.
  8. 8
    Wrap lasagna tightly in the foil by taking the longest sides of the foil and bringing them to meet above the lasagna.
  9. 9
    Fold the edges of the foil together to make a 'paper bag' effect (like that you would when folding a brown paper lunch bag)above the lasagna. Begin to fold the edges together downward until you are just above the lasagna.
  10. 10
    Flatten the foil out above the lasagna and fold in the remaining sides like a present, first the sides, then the middle.
  11. 11
    Two dishwasher lasagnas ready to be cooked
     Two dishwasher lasagnas ready to be cooked
    Place the wrapped lasagna flat in your dishwasher on the bottom rack.
  12. 12
    Set dishwasher to normal cycle and select 'heated dry' and 'sanitize' settings for maximum heat.
  13. 13
    Just removed from the dishwasher
     Just removed from the dishwasher
    Wait for the cycle to complete, then carefully remove lasagna from foil and let stand for a few minutes before serving.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Roasted Vegetable Lasagna

Roasted-Vegetable Lasagna

Cooking Light

A couple of weeks ago I found a recipe for Roasted Vegetable Lasagna on My Recipes and posted it on my Facebook wall.  My husband called from work, excited that we were having that for dinner.  Hated to break it to him, I wasn't cooking it that night, just ran across it that day.  Every day for over a week, he asked me if we were having it that night.  FINALLY, I broke down and made it... and it was SOOO worth the wait!

    4 red bell peppers
    1 teaspoon olive oil
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    6 yellow squash, halved lengthwise and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 1 1/2 pounds)
    1 large onion, cut into 16 wedges (I used half of a purple onion and half a yellow)
    4 garlic cloves, minced
    Cheese mixture:
    2 cups 2% low-fat cottage cheese
    1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) grated sharp provolone cheese
    1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
    1 teaspoon dried oregano
    White sauce:
    3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    1 1/2 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
    2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
    1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    Cooking spray
    9 cooked lasagna noodles (lay them out on waxed paper after cooking to keep them from sticking)
    2 cups spinach leaves, divided
    1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Cut bell peppers in half and remove seeds and stems. Put pepper halves on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten with hand. Broil 15 minutes or until blackened. Place in a zip-top plastic bag; seal. Let stand until it cools a little. Peel; set aside. (There are only 2 peppers here because I still had a couple of roasted peppers in my freezer from the end of summer- that's what's in the ziplock bag above- They freeze wonderfully)

After you take the peppers out, change oven temp to 450°.
Combine oil, salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, squash, and onion on a baking sheet; toss well. Bake at 450° for 20 minutes. Remove from oven; combine squash mixture and garlic in a bowl.

Decrease oven temperature to 375°.
To prepare cheese mixture, combine cottage cheese and next 3 ingredients (cottage cheese through oregano) in a bowl.
To prepare white sauce, mix flour and milk in a medium saucepan (I mix the flour and half of the milk in a measuring cup until it's smooth, then add the mixture with the rest of the milk to the sauce pan and mix well-  less lumps).  Cook over medium heat until thick; stir constantly. Remove from heat; stir in 2 tablespoons chopped basil and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper.

Spread 1/4 cup white sauce in bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Arrange 3 noodles over sauce; top with 1 & 1/4 cups cheese mixture, 1 cup spinach, 4 bell pepper halves, 2 cups vegetable mixture, and 1/4 cup white sauce. Repeat layers, ending with noodles. Spread remaining white sauce over noodles.  (Here is what it looked like before the final layer of sauce, noodles and cheese.  I thought it looked pretty.  Wanted to get a spoon and start eating right away!)

Cover and bake at 375° for 15 minutes. Uncover; sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Bake an additional 20 minutes.  

Sauteed Halibut with Romesco Sauce- Great for Lent!

I love the Lenten season.  It gives me an excuse to cook fish more often!  I recently saw a recipe in Cooking Light for Sauteed Halibut with Romesco Sauce and thought I would try it.  I followed the directions exactly and put my ancho pepper under the broiler for 2 minutes, but that was about a minute too long and it was burned to a crisp.  I headed over to the internet and started searching to figure out what to do about the ancho pepper and found MANY different variations of Romesco sauce.  The only common ingredients were red bell peppers, vinegar and nuts (hazelnuts or almonds).  After searching for a while, I went back into the kitchen and mixed up what I thought were the best parts of the recipes I looked at and came up with my own version!  It was wonderful!  Try it!

Here is what you use for Romesco Sauce:
1 large red bell pepper
1 slice of whole wheat bread
1/2 c slivered almonds roasted
1 can fire roasted tomatoes (drained)
1 dried ancho pepper
5 cloves garlic
about 1 TBS smoked paprika (I did to taste)
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
about 1 - 2 tsp chipotle chili powder (again, to taste)
1/4 tsp sugar
salt and pepper to taste
1 to 2 TBS red wine vinegar
about 1/2 cup olive oil

Preheat broiler.  Cut the bell pepper in half and remove seeds and stem.  Flatten on a baking sheet.  Put under broiler until skin is charred.  The pepper underneath won't be burned, but will be roasted to perfection.   Remove from oven and put in a zip lock bag to steam (makes it really easy to remove skin).  Once it has cooled a little, remove from bag and the skins will slip right off.  Meanwhile, cut ancho pepper in half and remove seeds and stem.  Then put a little olive oil in a skillet and toast the bread until it is nice and golden.  At the same time, put the ancho in the pan until it sort of starts to plump up a tiny bit and turn red in spots. Remove from pan and cut pepper into strips and tear bread.

When the bell peppers are done roasting, turn the oven to 350 degrees and put 5 garlic cloves (skin still on) on a baking pan and drizzle a tiny bit of olive oil on them, then mix them up so they are covered in olive oil.  I added my roasted tomatoes to the pan, but you could leave that step out if you wanted.  Pour 1/2 cup slivered almonds onto another baking sheet and put them all in the oven.  Roast until the garlic is soft (about 10-15 minutes, it will start to look a little browned).  Watch the almonds closely and remove when they are lightly toasted.  (I have ruined MANY batches of almonds by walking away from them for just a minute while roasting... they go from perfect to ruined very quickly).  Remove from oven and let the garlic cool enough so that you can squeeze the garlic out of the skin.

Next, add roasted bell peppers, ancho pepper, tomatoes, garlic and almonds to a food processor.  Add spices (I wouldn't use regular paprika, the smokiness of the smoked paprika is what made it taste so good).  Blend in food processor then drizzle in red wine vinegar and olive oil.  Taste it and adjust spices, vinegar and olive oil to your taste.

It's best to make the Romesco Sauce at least an hour ahead of time so that the flavors can meld.  I read that you can make it up to a week ahead of time.

For the halibut, I sprinkled a little kosher salt and fresh ground pepper on it, sprayed my skillet with my Misto Olive Oil Sprayer and sauteed until it was done.   (see my post here for info on the sprayer)

Doesn't this look delicious??   YUMMY!

Here is the rice recipe from Cooking Light:
Serve with Nutty Rice: Cook 1 cup basmati rice according to package directions. Stir in 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions, 2 tablespoons toasted slivered almonds, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Yield: 4 servings. CALORIES 191; FAT 2g (sat 0.2g); SODIUM 152mg

Linking to:
A Thrifty Mom- Look What I made,
Time Warp Wife- {Titus 2}SDAYS
A Southern Fairytale- Mouthwatering Mondays

Misto Olive Oil Sprayer

Amazon has lowered the price on the Misto Olive Oil Sprayer!  I have one of these and use it daily.  We LOVE olive oil on our bread, but when I drizzle it on the bread, I would get WAY more than I needed.  One day about a year ago I bought one at Bed Bath and Beyond for $14.99.  I fill mine with Garlic Infused Extra Virgin Olive Oil and spray it on our bread before I stick it in the oven.  The taste is amazing and it's better for you than butter or margarine.   I also use it to spray my pans with instead of a commercial aerosol spray like Pam.   I think I'll have to buy another to fill with regular olive oil so I can use it when I don't want garlic flavored oil (garlic pancakes weren't very good. LOL!!)  Check out the video below to see how it works.  When you order yours, please go thru my blog, I'm an Amazon associate (can you tell?)

Misto M100S Gourmet Brushed Aluminum Olive Oil Sprayer

by Misto

List Price:$15.99
Price:$8.50 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25. Details
You Save:$7.49 (47%)

Friday, March 25, 2011


A little while ago, I came across a really great blog named Sprik Space.  The author, Aimee, does a "Sunday Sustenance".  This one, I felt the need to share.   It is such a profound thought about charity.

"Charity is, perhaps, in many ways a misunderstood word. We often equate charity with visiting the sick, taking in casseroles to those in need, or sharing our excess with those who are less fortunate. But really, true charity is much, much more.

Real charity is not something you give away; it is something that you acquire and make a part of yourself. And when the virtue of charity becomes implanted in your heart, you are never the same again. It makes the thought of being a basher repulsive.

Perhaps the greatest charity comes when we are kind to each other, when we don’t judge or categorize someone else, when we simply give each other the benefit of the doubt or remain quiet. Charity is accepting someone’s differences, weaknesses, and shortcomings; having patience with someone who has let us down; or resisting the impulse to become offended when someone doesn’t handle something the way we might have hoped. Charity is refusing to take advantage of another’s weakness and being willing to forgive someone who has hurt us. Charity is expecting the best of each other."

Sunday, March 20, 2011

BBQ Spaghetti (aka Chipotle Roasted Pork Loin, Part 3)

Ready for part 3 (and 4 for that matter) of the meal that keeps on giving?!?  It really amazed me at how far a 3 1/2 lb pork roast could go!  First night was Chipotle Crusted Pork Loin, next night was BBQ Pulled Pork.  I didn't want to have BBQ sandwiches again, so I got on the internet and googled until I found an interesting idea for left over BBQ pulled pork.

BBQ Spaghetti!!
Here is what you do..
Saute 1/2 medium onion and 1 to 2 cloves diced garlic in 1 TBS olive oil until tender but now brown.  Add a can of diced tomatoes, a can of crushed tomatoes, an 8oz can tomato sauce, some dried oregano and dried basil (maybe about a little less than 1/2 TBS of each) and some crushed red pepper (to taste, depending on how spicy your family likes).  Let it cook 20 to 30 minutes.  Once it has thickened up a little, add your left over BBQ pulled pork and heat thru.  Cook up your favorite pasta and your done!

Believe it or not, I had left over BBQ spaghetti sauce (there were only 2 of us eating this night), so I put it in a freezer bag and about a week later pulled it out and mixed it with some colorful rotini pasta.  We liked it better with the rotini pasta than with the spaghetti, the pork kind of just stuck in the spirals which made it even better!

Linking to

Saturday, March 19, 2011

BBQ Pulled Pork (aka Chipotle Roasted Pork Loin, Part 2)

On my previous post, I cooked a wonderful Chipotle Pork Loin, but it was too big for my family to eat in one day.  We love pulled pork, so the next afternoon, I put it in the Crockpot with our favorite BBQ sauce* and let it cook until it was falling apart.

Then I took 2 forks and shredded the pork.  We had pulled pork sandwiches and I cooked some Alexia Spicy Sweet Potato Fries.  Love a dinner with no effort!

*If you have time, Big Al's K.C. Bar-B-Q Sauce is an excellent BBQ sauce recipe that I have been using for a while now.  I let it cook for a couple of hours instead of 20 min and usually use honey instead of molasses (only because I always have honey around).  I also make it a little spicier, use mesquite liquid smoke instead of hickory and add about half of a beer (even add a little left over coffee sometimes).  It is a great base recipe, just taste it as you go along and adjust to make it your own.  I always make a big batch and freeze it so I will have a fabulous BBQ sauce whenever I need it.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Chipotle Crusted Pork Loin Roast & Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes

This turned out to be the meal that kept on giving (in a good way).  I started with a large pork loin roast and "reinvented" it twice.  That's the great thing about pork roasts, there are so many things you can do with them.  I started with the recipe for Chipotle Crusted Pork Roast (modified for Chipotle Crusted Pork Tenderloin)

2 tsp onion powder (I also added some dried onion flakes)
2 tsp garlic powder
5 TBS chipotle chili powder (more or less to taste-  it's pretty spicy)
2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 large pork loin roast

Mix all ingredients together and coat pork roast evenly.  Put in the refrigerator for a few hours to marinate.

Remove from fridge, preheat oven to 475 degrees.   Place pork on a rack in a roasting pan, fat side up.  (If you don't have a rack, you can coil up some foil and snake it under the pork roast to make your own rack-- that's what I do)  Put in oven at 475 for 10 minutes.  Reduce heat to 325 and cook until it reaches an internal temperature of 155 degrees (23-33 minutes per pound).

Remove from oven and let it rest for about 5 minutes.  It will continue cooking to an internal temp of 160 degrees.

Oh, it was GOOOOOOD!  Smokey, spicy & sweet all in one!

For the Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes.  Bake 4 large sweet potatoes (be sure to put foil under them, they are messy when you cook them).  When they are cool enough to handle, cut them in half and scoop out the potatoes.  Mash them, add a little butter and some chipotle chili powder to taste.  Put them in a small baking dish.  Sprinkle just a little brown sugar on the top, and put it back in the oven for about 15 minutes.  It is a perfect match!

Oh, it was GOOOOOOD!  Smokey, spicy & sweet all in one!
Stay tuned for part 2 of 3 of the never ending pork roast-- pulled pork sandwiches.

One side note, after cooking the sugar covered pork, there was a HUGE burned mess in the bottom of the pan.  If you don't already have some Dawn Power Dissolver, it might be a good idea to pick some up.  This stuff works amazingly.  It will get any pan clean with no scrubbing.  I spray it on and 30 minutes later go back to the pan with a scraper and the burnt on mess literally peels right off.

Linking up to:

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Rosemary Chicken Thighs with Potatoes

Here is a very easy delicious meal I cooked the other night. Everyone loved it and I loved it because it was so easy to make! Hope you enjoy it!

Rosemary Chicken Thighs with Potatoes

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1/2 onion, quartered
8 cloves of garlic
6 sprigs rosemary
10-12 small red potatoes
1 TBS olive oil
fresh cracked black pepper and kosher salt to taste
1/4 c. capers

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Mince garlic, remove needles from rosemary.  Season chicken with salt and pepper to taste.  Toss all ingredients (except capers) in baking dish; roast for about and hour or until juices run clear.  Sprinkle with capers and ENJOY!  That was easy, right?

Unfortunately, I couldn't get a picture of it after it came out of the oven.  I smelled so good cooking that as soon as I pulled it out of the oven, it was devoured immediately.

Linking up with

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Grow Your Own Ketchup!

Well, maybe not your own ketchup, but you can try!  Spring is here in Cali and I'm about ready to pull up my winter garden (didn't produce more than 3 bunches of broccoli and a couple of cups of snap peas) and get it ready to plant my summer garden.  I couldn't pass up blogging about this one.  Red Robin is giving away Heinz tomato seed packets.  Just visit Red Robin's web site and click on the link.

Thanks to Moms By Heart for the link!  (check out her page, my favorite frugal blogger)
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