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Any Excuse To Process Something

January 25, 2012

I’ve made my first new recipe of 2012.  I found it while perusing my magazine-for-middle-aged-ladies, aka Woman’s Day.  It’s funny because at first glance I thought this recipe was a favorite of Valerie Bertinelli’s.  But no, after reading further I realized that this was Woman’s Day’s interpretation of a lower fat version of VB’s fave recipe.

But hey, it’s a new year and after celebrating my birthday season and the holiday season back-to-back a low cal lasagna sounded like a great idea.

Plus (and this is a big plus), you make part of the recipe in the food processor!  

That might not excite many of you.  But readers of my old blog (no, you can’t find it, I took it down) might remember that I won a food processor from Centsational Girl.

Oh I was excited about that food processor.

Big dreams, people.  Big dreams.

Hummus.  Pesto.  Complicated recipes.  Processing food in large quantities.

Then the food processor arrived.

And sat on the shelf.  Looking at me reproachfully.

I felt so guilty about not using it that I actually loaned it to a friend who wanted to make hummus.

She brought it back, still in the box.

It’s like the food processor was destined to gather dust forever.

Until Valerie Bertinelli came along.

Way to go Val!

I’ve made lasagna in the past, but it was cheater lasagna made with no-cook noodles and bottled sauce.

This time it was from SCRATCH.  Woot woot!

I started the noodles cooking and pulled out the food processor to make the sauce.  First up you had to process two cloves of garlic, and then add some tomatoes.  I grabbed my garlic bulb and realized it was pretty old.  Many of the cloves had kind of shriveled.  I kept throwing away yucky cloves until at last I find some good meaty ones.  The middle cloves.  You know, the ones that are like three times the size of a regular clove.  I put one in the processor to pulverize as I peeled the other.  As I dropped the second clove into the processor I thought to myself, “Hmm.  Those cloves are pretty big.  Wonder if I should have just used one.”  But at that point the second clove was in the processor.  It hadn’t been processed yet, but I struggled mightily with getting the lid on in just the proper way and I wasn’t quite sure I could get it back off.  (And no, I did not read the manual.  Why do you ask?).

So the two nuclear-holocaust garlic-growth-hormone mutant cloves processed in the food processor.

The kitchen filled with a mist of garlic.

Tourists knocked on my door and asked if this is Little Italy.

You are not here

Vampires for blocks around keeled over cursing my name.

I did not let any of this stop me.  No no, I was pressing on toward the goal that was lasagna from scratch.

The noodles finished cooking and I began assembling the layers.  And this is when I realized why those no-cook noodles are so popular.

Because have you ever tried to get a wet lasagna noodle out of a pot and into a casserole?  While it’s boiling hot?  And slippery?

It’s not an easy task.

But it got significantly easier when I remembered these handy little guys.

Tongs. Silicone tongs.

My mom bought them for me years ago.  And I remember at the time thinking to myself, “why is she buying those tongs?”  And so I asked her, “Why are you buying those tongs?”  She gave me some song and dance about how they are really so very handy and I’ll be glad I have them someday blah blah blah tongs blah blah blah useful and whatnot.

She was right!

I will now compose a haiku about tongs:

Happy tongs today

Silicone goodness for food

Hold that noodle tight

I layered and baked and became acclimated to the garlic.  Neighbor C came to join me for dinner.

I served that lasagna with pride.  As BooMama would say, I was walking in lasagna victory.

She took a bite and said “Um, I think it’s a little heavy on the garlic.”

Which is the exact same thing that Neighbor G said the next day at lunch.

But I must note that the excess garlic did not stop either of them from cleaning their plate.  Neighbor C even took leftovers home.

Oh mutant garlic, where is thy sting?

9 Comments leave one →
  1. January 25, 2012 3:17 pm

    The haiku about the tongs was awesome. And I so want to taste the lasagna!

  2. Brooklyn_Friend permalink
    January 25, 2012 6:54 pm

    Ha ha ha Juice!!!! I adore reading your blog! 🙂

  3. January 25, 2012 8:52 pm

    vampires for blocks keeled over cursing my name. HA!!!! you are killing me with this post!! and your mutant garlic!! i love it!! here’s to many more happy recipes with the food processor!! 🙂

  4. January 26, 2012 11:03 am

    Funniest. post. ever.

  5. January 26, 2012 11:07 am

    My dad taught me a valuable lesson in the kitchen: there is no such thing as too much garlic.

    Good on you for your home made lasagna!! It sounds delish! I always use the no-boil noodles because they are a beautiful thing.

  6. debby permalink
    January 26, 2012 1:45 pm

    You got me chuckling on a day when I feel like, well, I don’t feel like chuckling! That haiku was too much.

  7. SeriouslyKK permalink
    January 27, 2012 12:32 am

    #1 – We did not grow up with garlic, so always add 1/4 to 1/2 of whatever the recipe calls for.

    #2 – Jarred, crushed garlic – meet Juice. Juice – meet jarred, crushed garlic. You two will love each other.

    #3 – Another way to reduce the “garlicky” nature is the same thing you do with onions… rinse them quickly under cold water after you’ve chopped them up. It gets rid of the shock and bitterness. Also, the longer you cook garlic, the more garlic taste it shares. Add your garlic in at the very end of making your recipe. (Yeah, you probably know all that. But I’m just the pesky little sister that is a pain in the rear.)

    #4 – I would like you to rename this post… “An Ode to Karen’s Baked Spaghetti” or, at the very least, “An Ode to Cape Memories that Forever Changed my Little Sister, in a Good Way.”

    Jus’ sayin’!

    XOXO – Love you – XOXO


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