Monday, September 19, 2011

Stovetop Lasagna

The second I saw this I knew I had to make it. Like, asap. Which I did, considering I saw this post sometime this weekend. My friend Jourdan found it via Pinterest (she's the one who got me hooked!), and she liked it so much that she made it twice in one week! Talk about glowing recommendations.

Anyhoo, it is a dreary Monday here, and I was feeling pretty mopey about it. So when I remembered this warm, tasty soup was waiting to be made, I cheered up a bit. However, the hubby wasn't feeling the soup, so I thought I would revise this a bit and make it into something heartier.

This was delicious, and let me add, so much easier than making actual lasagna. Cooking meat, pasta sauce and pasta - all separately, and then mixing cheese together. Not to mention all the layering...Don't get me wrong, I love lasagna, but it takes a very long time. This, however, is nothing compared to all that. Oh, and just as tasty. Add in Cheesy Oven-Roasted Garlic Bread and Happy Monday!


Pasta Base:
*1 lb Italian sausage
*1/2 large chopped onion
*4 garlic cloves, minced
*2 tsp. dried oregano
*1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
*2 tbsp tomato paste
*1 28-oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes (I used 2 cans from Hunts)
*10-14 oz. crushed tomatoes (depending on how thick you want it and flavor)
*10-15 oz chicken stock, depending on how thick you want it
*8 oz. mafalda or rotini pasta (or any pasta; I used whole wheat whole grain rotini!)
*1/3 cup finely chopped fresh basil leaves
*4 tablespoons brown sugar
*salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Cheesy yum:
*8 oz. ricotta (I used nonfat)
*1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp. salt
*pinch of freshly ground pepper
*2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

*In a large pot or stockpot, brown sausage, breaking up into bite sized pieces, and add onions. Cook until softened, about 6 minutes.
*Add garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute.
*Add tomato paste and stir well to incorporate. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the tomato paste turns a rusty brown color.
*Add diced tomatoes and chicken stock. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add uncooked pasta and cook until al dente. (Do not over cook or let soup simmer for a long period of time at this point, as the pasta will get mushy.)
*Add brown sugar. Stir in basil and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
*While the pasta is cooking, prepare the cheesy yum. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta, Parmesan, salt, and pepper.
*To serve, place a dollop of the cheesy yum in each soup bowl, sprinkle some of the mozzarella on top and ladle the hot pasta mixture over the cheese.

All you need for this yummy dish!

Simmering away

Cheesy yum

My "dollop" of cheesy yum

Soooo gooood.

I can't imagine eating this without the garlic bread. It's that good.

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