A Labor Of Love - Tasty Tuesdays 1

I have said it before, if it weren't for my husband, I'd starve.

I collect recipes, but I don't cook. I don't even know how to properly cut an onion. I have NEVER been comfortable in the kitchen and truly admire anyone who is. Anyone that can whip up something amazing from odds and ends on hand is my hero.

Half a dozen times a year, I make dinner and last night was one of those rare occasions.
If you told me on Sunday that I would be participating in Alicia's (A Beautiful Mess) Tasty Tuesdays, I would have told you you were nuts, but never say never, right? Sometimes we even surprise ourselves.
Why I choose yesterday to tackle lasagna, one of the hottest days of summer we have had so far and a day in which I woke up feeling really crappy, is beyond me, but Lucas cooperated at the grocery store and graciously took a two hours nap so that I could busy myself in the kitchen.
My mother made a terrific lasagna that I could never replicate, even with the recipe staring me in the face, so I've been on the hunt for one equally good, but mine... not to mention a little healthier. I have made this dish twice before, but knew I was really on to something when my mother-in-law asked me for the recipe. She is a phenomenal cook so I took that as a huge compliment. I think this was my best effort.

Lucas even enjoyed several bites.
By the way, the leftovers are great, the clean up, not so much.
Turkey Lasagna with Spinach
From MarthaStewart.com

- Serves 6
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound fresh ground turkey
  • 1 (28-ounce) can plum tomatoes, crushed
  • 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
  • 1 (9-ounce) package no-boil lasagna noodles (ONE OF THE BEST INVENTIONS EVER!!)
  • 15 ounces low-fat ricotta or low-fat cottage cheese
  • 3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 2 pounds fresh spinach, washed, but not dried
  • 1 pound low-fat shredded mozzarella cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until translucent. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Add ground turkey and cook for about 10 minutes. Add plum tomatoes, tomato paste, and season with salt and pepper; let simmer until thickened, about 20 minutes. Stir in basil and parsley; set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine ricotta, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, and egg; season with salt and pepper and set aside.
  4. Place damp spinach in a large skillet over medium heat; cook until wilted. Remove from heat and set aside.
  5. Ladle 1/4 of the turkey mixture into a 9-by-13-inch baking dish; spread to cover. Add a pasta sheet, 1/3 of the mozzarella, 1/3 of the ricotta mixture, 1/3 of the spinach mixture, and another 1/4 of the turkey mixture. Repeat process two more times; top with remaining sheet of pasta. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan over top. Line a piece of aluminum foil with parchment paper; spray parchment with nonstick cooking spray. Cover lasagna with prepared aluminum foil, parchment-side down, and transfer to oven. Bake until bubbly, 25 to 30 minutes.
  6. Let stand about 5 minutes before cutting; serve.
The best is yet to be.