Vegetable lasagna

Ina Garten’s Vegetable Lasagna

If it contains veggies, it is totally healthy and nutritious, even if “it” is a cheesy delicious lasagna…right? YOLO. I was in the mood for a project on Sunday night (a food related project, obvi) and coincidentally very in the mood for lasagna. So, I was thrilled to find Ina Garten’s recipe for roasted vegetable lasagna on Barefoot Contessa.

Vegetable lasagna

SO good.

It’s not NOT time consuming, but there are a few shortcuts I’ll include in the instructions. And the quality of ingredients makes a huge difference, so buy the good stuff. You’ll have leftovers for like a week, so it’s basically an investment. The veggies in this recipe are zucchini and eggplant, but you could easily add in mushrooms. Next time I make it, I’ll be adding some spinach!

I’m putting this recipe on my list of “things to feed a crowd with” because like the other recipes on that list (primarily enchiladas), you can assemble it ahead of time and just pop it in the oven whenever you’re ready! Great success.

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Cacio_e_pepe

Cacio e Pepe

In my Rome recap post, I shared that I completely fell in love with Cacio e Pepe on our honeymoon – I mean, what’s not to love about a pasta dish centered around cheese (and pepper)? Luckily for me, my Cravings cookbook has a pretty good recipe (no I don’t get paid to promote this cookbook I’m just THAT obsessed with it). So what better way to spend a Friday night than recreating one of the best pasta dishes I’ve ever had?

Cacio_e_pepe

Extra pepe, please.

Really went hard with the cheese the first time around. Not mad about it. Feel free to switch it up by mixing different cheeses, or adding pancetta. Also, to truly recreate the pasta we had in Italy I had to attempt homemade spaghetti. I discovered that it’s actually pretty simple to make and roll out pasta dough, however operating the pasta maker is definitely a two person job. See: Hunter. I use the Atlas 150 pasta maker from Crate & Barrel (thanks LL!).

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peach_basil_ricotta_crostini

Peach, Basil and Ricotta Crostini

I love a good appetizer. In fact, appetizers might just be the best part of any and every meal for me – I could make a meal entirely out of apps. So of course, I love anything on a crostini.

I’ve been feeling inspired to make a crostini creation lately – in part because of Love & Lemons’ Fig, Feta and Mint Crostini and Chrissy Teigen’s “Sh*t on Toast” section of Cravings – and also because it’s a super easy vehicle for cheese.

Peach_basil_ricotta_crostini

I mean, how easy and gorgeous is this?

I found some edible flowers during a shopping trip to Whole Foods last week, and took it as a sign. (Side note: edible flowers taste just like you would expect a flower to, so don’t set the bar too high). It’s also important to note that there are two kinds of cheese present in this appetizer: ricotta and feta. Plus, with peaches now in season, this recipe is a great excuse to get your fill!

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Ringing in 2016 with Cheese Boards and Black-Eyed Peas

Happy New Year friends!

Hope you all celebrated 2016 as enthusiastically as I did! Currently detoxing with Roots Pressed Juices’ Hydrate situation – cucumber, lime, mint, apple and ginger. Bottoms up!

This year (Technically last year, we’ll say Thursday night) we hosted a few friends for New Year’s Eve, so I decided to do the right thing and put together a cheese board. Now, to preface the situation, you should know that I have an extreme cheese board obsession. I love all cheeses, old, blue, sharp, soft…etc. etc. so cheese boards hold a special place in my heart. I’ll need to post a roundup of my favorites in Dallas, as I have tried many a local platter of this delightful dairy product. I digress.

MichaelScott

Now on New Year’s Day, we eat black-eyed peas. I can’t speak to whether or not these actually bring good luck, but as Michael Scott once said, “I’m not superstitious, but I am a little stitious.” Last year I kept it simple and made the peas with some roasted cabbage steaks. While that was pretty tasty, this year I decided we needed a little more substance to our meal. I came across The Young Austinian’s recipe for Hoppin’ John Bowls, Collards and Cornbread Biscotti. It looked super hearty and seemed to be just what we were needing after a night out, so I put my own spin on it using Benevolent Bacon.

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