Saturday, July 30, 2016

Lasagna Soup

I found this recipe somewhere on the web and it is so, so good. It tastes just like lasagna in a bowl. It's the perfect soup for a night like tonight. We got 2+ feet of snow on Friday/Saturday and it's not going anywhere fast, especially the huge piles that have been plowed. A nice warm bowl of soup will be perfect. {I'm way late posting this since it's now July but this soup is delicious and you'll want the recipe come November.}

Lasagna Soup
serves 8

for the soup:
2 tsp olive oil
1 1/2 lbs. Italian sausage
3 c chopped onions
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 28-oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes
2 bay leaves
6 c chicken stock
8 oz mafalda or fusilli pasta
salt and freshly ground black pepper

for the cheesy yum:
8 oz ricotta
1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp salt
pinch of freshly ground pepper

additional cheesy yum:
2 c shredded mozzarella cheese

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add sausage, breaking up into bite sized pieces, and brown for about 5 minutes. Add onions and cook until softened, about 6 minutes. Add garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute. Add tomato paste and stir well to incorporate. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the tomato paste turns a rusty brown color.

Add diced tomatoes, bay leaves, and chicken stock. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add uncooked pasta and cook until al dente. Do not over cook or let soup simmer for a long period of time at this point, as the pasta will get mushy and absorb all the soup broth. You may even want to consider cooking the noodles separately, and then adding some to individual bowls before ladling the soup over them. This would be an especially smart move if you are anticipating any leftovers. Right before serving, stir in the basil and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare the cheesy yum. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta, Parmesan, salt, and pepper.

To serve, place a dollop of the cheesy yum in each soup bowl, ladle the hot soup over the cheese, and sprinkle some of the mozzarella on top.

from a farmgirl's dabbles

Friday, July 22, 2016

Mongolian Beef

We're at the beginning of a long heat wave and needing to fix dinner on a Friday night I wanted something that was easy and didn't require the oven or grill. I've seen mention several times recently about using the crockpot in the summer and thought I'd peruse my crockpot pinterest board to see if there was something that struck my fancy and seemed summer like. This was quick, easy, and really good.

Mongolian Beef
serves 4-6

1 1/2 lbs flank steak
1/4 c cornstarch
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 minced garlic clove
3/4 c soy sauce
3/4 c water
3/4 c brown sugar
several squirts of sriracha hot sauce (more or less, depending on how much heat you want to add)
1 c grated carrots
1 medium onion, sliced
1 medium green pepper, sliced
green onions, sliced for garnish
rice, for serving

Cut flank steak into thin strips. This is easiest if you freeze it for 10-15 minutes before slicing. Toss flank steak with the cornstarch in either a bowl or ziplock bag.

Add olive oil, garlic, soy sauce, water, brown sugar, and sriracha to the crockpot and stir. Add the carrots, then the steak, stirring to mix.

Cook for 3-4 hours on high/4-5 hours on low, adding the onion and green pepper about 45 minutes before it's finished. Serve over rice, garnish with the green onions.

slightly modified from The Recipe Critic