Friday, January 25, 2008

Wedding Pie

My sisters' best friend got married this past weekend and I was honored to be able to fix the rehearsal dinner meal. The bride requested that I make my lasagna and lemon pie. While I was in college I picked up this lasagna recipe from my roommates mom. If you have ever wanted to make lasagna and not pre-cook the noodles here's a tip: Don't. I never have and I never will. Are you ready for the easiest lasagna recipe in the world? I usually add extra meat and call it Mansagna.

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Start to Finish: 1 hr 20 minutes
Ready in a flash, there's no need to pre-cook the lasagna noodles in this crowd-pleasing dish.


9 pieces (about 8 oz.) AMERICAN BEAUTY Lasagna, uncooked
1 lb. ground beef
3 cups (about 26-oz. jar) spaghetti sauce
1-1/2 cups water
1-3/4 cups (15-oz. container) ricotta or small curd cottage cheese
2 cups (8 oz.) shredded mozzarella or Monterey jack cheese, divided
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 eggs
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper


Heat oven to 350°F.
In 3-quart saucepan over medium heat, brown meat; drain. Add spaghetti sauce and water; simmer about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, in large bowl, stir together ricotta cheese, one-half mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, eggs, parsley, salt and pepper. Pour about 1 cup sauce on bottom of 13x9x2-inch baking dish.
Arrange 3 UNCOOKED pasta pieces lengthwise over sauce; cover with about 1 cup sauce. Spread one-half cheese filling over sauce. Repeat layers of lasagna, sauce and cheese filling.
Top with layer of lasagna and remaining sauce; sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese. Cover with foil.
Bake 45 minutes. Remove foil; bake additional 15 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
10-12 servings.

Now for the very simple, lemony pie. My mom has been making this for years and gets requests for it all the time.
Lemonade Pie
1 can of sweetened condensed milk
1/2 can frozen lemonade concentrate
1 small tub of cool whip
1- 9in. graham cracker crust or 8 individual
In a mixing bowl combine sweetened condensed milk, thawed lemonade concentrate and cool whip. Pour into pie crust and let set for at least 30 minutes. Garnish as desired. I like to use another dollop of cool whip and sprinkles or lemon slices.

If you don't like lemon, you can make the pie with any kind of concentrate that you can find, so go nuts and try every flavor there is! So there you are, two of the easiest recipes I know. I'm always amazed that often the most satisfying and regularly requested dishes are simple things done well.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

New Year, New Blog

I have decided to resurrect Cake Bake Farms. I want to have a way to chronicle my baking adventures and I have been taking pictures of pretty much everything I've been baking, so I thought would post them from time to time. I think I shall even post a recipe or two. To tell the truth I'm awful at passing on recipes because I so rarely use them, I tweak almost every recipe I get, not because I'm a master pastry chef (oh how I wish) but because I hate measuring and I love to go with the flow when I'm cooking. However, I love baking and that requires a little more precision. So I think I shall try to do better this year and write some recipes down! I will leave you with two individual dessert items I made over Christmas for your drooling pleasure.

Mini Cherry Cheesecake Tarts

One-bite Christmas Cupcakes

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