Monday, September 6, 2010

Spicy Vegetarian Lasagna


  • 1 (16 ounce) package lasagna noodles
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2/3 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 2/3 cup diced orange bell pepper
  • 2/3 cup diced yellow bell pepper
  • 2/3 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 dash crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 (15 ounce) container ricotta cheese
  • 1 (8 ounce) package shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)


  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna pasta in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes, or until al dente. Drain, rinse with cold water, and place on wax paper to cool.
  2. Cook bell peppers and onion in olive oil in a large sauce pan until onions are translucent. Stir in diced tomatoes, tomato paste, water, and red pepper flakes. More red pepper flakes can be added if spicier sauce is preferred. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 375° F (190° C). In a medium bowl, combine Parmesan cheese, ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese, eggs, black pepper, and oregano.
  4. Place a small amount of sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Reserve 1/2 cup of the sauce. Place three lasagna noodles lengthwise in pan. Layer some of the cheese mixture and the vegetable sauce on top of noodles. Repeat layering with remaining ingredients, ending with noodles. Spread reserved sauce over top of noodles. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.
  5. Cover dish with foil, and bake for 40 minutes or until bubbly. Remove foil during last 10 minutes of baking.

Beef with Broccoli

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3/4 pound sirloin beef tips, sliced against the grain 1/8 inch thick
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 10 ounces frozen broccoli florets, thawed
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup water 
Special equipment: a well-seasoned 14-inch flat-bottomed wok
(Optional) Rice, Fresh Cilantro Sprigs
  1. Toss together cornstarch, salt, pepper, and beef in a bowl until meat is coated.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in wok over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then stir-fry beef until just cooked through, about 1 minute. 
  3. Transfer with a slotted spoon to another bowl and keep warm, loosely covered with foil.
  4. Add remaining tablespoon oil to wok along with broccoli and garlic and stir-fry over moderately high heat until broccoli is just tender and garlic is pale golden, about 2 minutes.
  5. Add soy sauce and water and bring to a boil. Return meat to skillet and cook, stirring, until sauce is thickened, about 2 minutes

Turkey Meatloaf

  • 1 1/2 cups finely chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 medium carrot, cut into 1/8-inch dice
  • 3/4 pound cremini mushrooms, trimmed and very finely chopped in a food processor
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 1 cup fine fresh bread crumbs (from 2 slices firm white sandwich bread)
  • 1/3 cup 1% milk
  • 1 whole large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/4 pound ground turkey (mix of dark and light meat)
  • (Optional)roasted red pepper tomato sauce or ketchup
Special equipment: a meat thermometer or an instant-read thermometer
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Cook onion and garlic in oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderate heat, stirring, until onion is softened, about 2 minutes. 
  3. Add carrot and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. 
  4. Add mushrooms, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid mushrooms are evaporated and they are very tender, 10 to 15 minutes. 
  5. Stir in Worcestershire sauce, parsley, and 3 tablespoons ketchup, then transfer vegetables to a large bowl and cool.
  6. Stir together bread crumbs and milk in a small bowl and let stand 5 minutes. 
  7. Stir in egg and egg white, then add to vegetables. 
  8. Add turkey and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper to vegetable mixture and mix well with your hands. (Mixture will be very moist)
  9. Form into a 9- by 5-inch oval loaf in a lightly oiled 13- by 9- by 2-inch metal baking pan and brush meatloaf evenly with remaining 2 tablespoons ketchup. 
  10. Bake in middle of oven until thermometer inserted into meatloaf registers 170°F, 50 to 55 minutes.
  11. Let meatloaf stand 5 minutes before serving.