Friday, June 12, 2009

How to Make Gourmet Lasagna in 6 Minutes: CHEAT!

How I Cooked Up Italian Cuisine in a Snap

"You drink vinegar when you have wine at your elbow."

--Thomas Fuller

I'd love to tell you how I spent my afternoon in the kitchen making homemade lasagna. It isn't really difficult to do. I've made lasagna (once for a boyfriend) but it did take some real work. Sure, adding fresh ricotta cheese, vegetables, layering the pasta, piece by piece, and the sauce should be from scratch with TLC. Whew! But today, I just wasn't in the mood to do it for me.

At 11:00 A.M. I was on Psychic Radio CBS, a national radio show, for nearly one hour to dish out how I (and seismic sentries) use intuition--sixth sense--to predict when and where the Earth will shake. (And I chatted about the perks of the Mediterranean diet and lifestyle.)

Then, I was off to walk my two Brittanys--and today was a joy. A fellow Brit was following us! (Three Brittanys walking down the street amid towering pine trees. It was a dream come true.) Back home again it was off to the pool. Ah, only one tourist: He was from Chicago; a great conversationalist as I swam lap after lap in the cool climate like San Francisco, not normal for Lake Tahoe...Later, it was to the post office to mail The Healing Powers of Olive Oil and The Healing Powers of Vinegar to an interested olive oil store owner. And next, to the grocery store (dodging tourists) to pick up purple grapes, organic strawberries, dark chocolate infused with pears, whole wheat French bread, organic cheese, and some other stuff.

At home again facing chores was a chore: watering the front yard; housecleaning; and the must-do filing sits staring at me. So the question remains, who in the world would want to spend time making homemade veggie lasagna when you can cheat and get it another way? Not me. It's Friday. And the microwave befriended me.

I confess. The other food stuff I purchased included frozen, yes frozen, Michael Angelo's Vegetable Lasagna. On top of the black box it reads "The Art Of Italian Cuisine" and on the bottom "NO PRESERVATIVES." Ingredients: tomatoes, vine-ripened, tomato puree, salt, basil, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, yellow squash, carrots, mushrooms, spinach; cooked lasagna noodles, mozzarella cheese, part skim ricotta, whole milk, vinegar, romano cheese, olive oil, garlic, honey, spice, pepper...a few other things but nothing looks unnatural to me or if it does this list passes the test for a meal. What's more, while it's high in sodium (720 mg) that's OK because I will eat more fruits and veggies for the day to keep my intake low. One serving size is a mere 280 calories; and I get 20% Vitamin A, 35% calcium, 30% iron of the required daily values. Not to forget the protein and fiber. .

Between you and me, sure, I'd love to have that sexy, sophisticated, tall and lanky, creative Italian gourmet chef in my kitchen creating this masterpiece but that's not happening right now. So, for today, this quick and easy dish for dinner made the grade for me--The Writing Gourmet--the one who hates to cook but loves fine food.

1 comment:

  1. All natural frozen dinners in the health food section at the grocery store are probably even better for you. Pizzas to pastas...are fine to indulge if you're just not in the groove to cook.