The Italians have it all. Carbs, scenery, wine…The latest of which I am now officially able to enjoy. That’s right folks. Thuy Lan is 21! The most exciting part about turning 21 for me is the fact that my recipe repertoire will soon expand to things that include alcohol like beef bourguignon, chicken marsala and margarita cupcakes. Oh and finally being able to take advantage of happy hour. I can casually just drop the “Let’s grab a drink sometime,” line all adult-like.
Despite the fact that I am indeed celebrating a birthday, it hardly seems like it at all. There was no midnight power hour, no party, nothing extremely significant to signify the coming of age birthday. That’s because…I’m in college. You’re all thinking ‘EXACTLY, YOU’RE IN COLLEGE YOU SHOULD BE PARTYING!’ but the lame part of me who cares too much about school and the money my parents and I are paying prioritizes grades over birthdays. It’s not all super lame though, because I will skip my evening class for drinks and dinner…Only the second time I have ever skipped class in my entire college tenure. But don’t tell. Actually tell whoever you want. It’s my birthday, I can live a little right?
I do choose indulgences over exercise or studying sometimes, so don’t go thinking I’m really boring or anything. I choose carbs. A lot. More often than I should. When you’re craving the goodness of carby, cheesy lasagna but don’t have the patience or the time to wait for an hour or more in the oven you should definitely make this. Enjoy with a glass of wine. I think I like white zinfandel, but I’ve heard that’s the…the wine for unsavory females. I am definitely NOT unsavory. Don’t judge, it’s yummy.
Also, thanks to my wonderful roommate for these ‘behind the scenes’ photos. She writes an amazing lifestyle, fashion and beauty blog—check it out!
3 sweet italian sausages, casings removed
1/2 medium white or yellow onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
6 large basil leaves, torn
1/2 tablespoon italian seasoning
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
1 large (28 oz) can of whole peeled tomatoes (no salt added- or if using salted, reduce amount of added salt)
1 can diced tomatoes
5-6 sheets (depending on preference or size) no-boil lasagna noodles
3 tablespoons parmesean
1/2 cup mascarpone or cream cheese
1 cup fresh mozzarella
1. In large skillet brown sausage, break into pieces, remove from pan when cooked.
2. Add onion and garlic to skillet, sauté until softened picking up brown bits from skillet
3. Add browned sausage, italian seasoning, red pepper, salt, whole tomatoes, diced tomatoes, torn basil. Crush the whole tomatoes with a potato masher or the back of your spoon. Simmer on low heat for 2-3 minutes.
4. Break up lasagna noodles and push underneath the sauce, distributing evenly. Try not to let them lay on top of one another, try to layer as best you can.
5. Cover and simmer on medium heat for 7-8 minutes.
6. Dollop mascarpone or cream cheese on top of sauce, sprinkle parmesan over top and swirl into sauce. Cover and simmer for 3-5 more minutes until noodles are almost al dente.
7. Layer mozzarella over top of sauce, cover and simmer until cheese is melted.
8. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.