Sunday, May 29, 2011

Dinner for Three

 The day that Gram died, I got home around 10 at night, and I started cooking and cleaning. As you do.
In this case, I had a very special mission.  I needed to make dinner and dessert for Miss Maia and her Pumpkin.  (Papa was out of town, so it was girls' night and we took full advantage!)
 Maia loooovveeeeesssssss banana bread. I make it for her as much as possible.
I headed into San Francisco and got as many snuggles and toothless grins I could possibly squeeze into the few hours we had together.  I know I may be biased, but I'm not exaggerating when I say: this is easily the cutest, sweetest, most lovable baby I have ever met.  I mean honestly:  look at that mug! swoon And there's nothing that soothes the ache from the loss of a precious life, as holding a new precious life does. Just what I needed, isn't Maia smart? ; )

For dinner, I made her a lasagna with ground beef and a loaf of homemade bread, and of course a loaf of banana bread. Every time I make lasagna, people ask me for the recipe. Here's what you need to know about me and lasagna:  I grew up with an Italian mother. People positively melt when they eat her lasagna. They can't get enough! I promise you this: you would vomit if you watched her make a lasagna. For an Italian? "lasagna night" is "clean out the refrigerator night". Everything gets tossed in, and it's not unusual to find yourself eating lasagna comprised almost entirely of shredded beef that was used in enchiladas on Tuesday, chicken that was roasted on Wednesday, and eggplant and zucchini that was not going to make it to the weekend in the vegetable crisper. Add a couple of eggs, ricotta cheese (cottage cheese also works, use whatever you have, because under no circumstances do you ever buy fresh ingredients for an Italian lasagna), and shred the ends of every moldy brick of mozzarella and cheddar you can find in the refrigerator.  Layer with noodles and tomato sauce.  Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees F for about an hour (remove foil for the last 10 minutes or so, so the cheese melts completely).

This is NOT the lasagna I made for Maia. You're welcome. The lasagna I make, that everybody asks how I make it and wants to know my secret for, comes directly from the side of the box that the no bake lasagna noodles come in. I buy the ingredients fresh, and I bake it immediately. I make it exclusively for other people, and every time I pull the 5 pound beast from the oven, Erik always demands to know (only half-kidding in his ire), "Why does everybody else get lasagna, and we never do!?!" To which I can only reply, "If you wanted lasagna, you shouldn't have married and Italian girl."

1 comment:

  1. My mom read this and called to tell me I "shouldn't be giving away family secrets". hahahahahahaha omg