Mexican Lasagna

On for tonight, Mexican Lasagna. I’ve been going through our pantry and freezer to see what’s lurking in there. Voila! Mexican Lasagna!

First, gather your ingredients:

    Mexican Lasagna

    • 1 lb. lasagna noodles (you’ll only need 1/2 of this box)
    • 2 lbs. ground beef (not pictured because, ew, gross! Who wants to see bloody defrosting meat?!)
    • Onion
    • 15-ish ounce can black beans, aka FRIJOLES NEGROS
    • 4 1/2 cups salsa – use mild, because cooking the salsa somehow makes it hotter
    • 8 oz. block cream cheese (because I like to make LOW FAT meals. Ha!)
    • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
    • Salt
    • 1/4 t cumin

    Bring water to a boil for noodles and cook for 6 or 7 minutes, drain. Meanwhile, brown beef and onion, drain, return to skillet. Add cream cheese and mix until cream cheese is melted into the meat. Add cumin, more or less to taste. Drain black beans. Layer noodles, meat mixture, beans, 1/3 cheese and 1/3 salsa. Repeat twice. Bake for 30 minutes. Let sit for 10 minutes for juices to absorb.

    Bring a good amount of salted water to a boil in your large stock pot. While your water is heating up, put your beef and your shopped onion in a skillet and brown. If your meat has been in the freezer for an unknown amount of time, you might want to get it extra brown. Yikes. Boil your lasagna noodles for 6 or 7 minutes. Too much longer and they will be hard to handle for layering purposes.

    Get some good help, if you can find it!

    Drain meat and onions, return to skillet. Add cream cheese and mix until cream cheese is melted into the meat. Add cumin, more or less to taste. It should look like this:

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

    Add about 1/8 c oil to noodles, which prevents noodles from sticking together, then stir, drain and rinse. Set aside to cool.

    Drain black beans.

    Layer three-ish noodles, 1/3 of meat,

    1/3 of beans, 1/2 c cheese,

    and 1 1/2 cups of salsa.

    Repeat twice, throwing the rest of the cheddar cheese on, because at this point, will an extra cup of cheese really make that much of a difference?

    Bake for about 30 minutes in the preheated 350 degree oven. Do your (gulp) dishes from cooking. Have your kids clean off the table and freshen up for your husband’s arrival!

    Let lasagna sit for about 10 minutes to let the liquid absorb.

    DISCLAIMER: Do as I say, not as I do.

What’s Cookin’, Good Lookin’?

I just adore cooking*. I seriously cook three meals a day. Currently I am in a recipe rut. When I’m in a recipe rut I read my cookbooks – from start to finish. I grab a cup of coffee or some sweet tea (yum) and head outside with a pen, a notebook, my cookbooks and my babies.

I’ve found several recently that are easy to make, but taste great. My favorite Italian meal, whether home or out, is Cannelloni, which is exceptionally difficult to make. It is labor-intensive and time-consuming. I found a recipe called “Inside Out Ravioli”. It tastes like Cannelloni without all the fuss.

Feel free to make it. You won’t be disappointed!

Inside Out Ravioli

  • 1 (10 oz) package frozen, chopped spinach
  • 1 T cooking oil
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 (1 lb.) jar spaghetti sauce with mushrooms
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 1/8 t pepper
  • 2 c macaroni, cooked
  • 1 c shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 c bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs, well beaten

Cook spinach according to package directions. Drain, reserving liquid. Add water to spinach liquid to make 1 cup. Set aside. Saute beef, onion and garlic in cooking oil. When brown, add spinach liquid, spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce and salt pepper. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine spinach, macaroni, cheddar cheese, bread crumbs and eggs. Pour mixture into a greased 9 x 13 inch dish. Top with meat sauce. Drizzle with Besciamella Sauce (below). Bake for 30 minutes.

    Besciamella Sauce

  • 6 T butter
  • 6 T flour
  • 1 pint half and half
  • Salt and pepper

Melt butter over low heat in a heavy saucepan. Remove from heat and stir in flour. Add half and half and bring to simmering over medium heat. Once thickened, add salt and pepper to taste.

You can thank me later.

*I hate doing dishes. And I don’t have a dishwasher.