In the Kitchen

The perfect Italian American comfort dish , Lasagna and for our Keto subbies Pumpkin Cookies.

Meat Sauce

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powered 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, (optional)
  • 2 cans (28 ounces each) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) petite diced tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • LASAGNA 
  • 1 container (32 ounces) ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten 
  • 1 teaspoon salt, (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon  black pepper 
  • 1 package (8 ounces) no-boil lasagna noodles

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. For the Meat Sauce, brown beef in large skillet. Remove meat from skillet and drain; set aside. Heat oil in same skillet on medium heat. Add onion, Seasoning, sugar, garlic powder and salt (if desired); cook and stir 5 to 10 minutes until onions are softened.
  1. Stir in crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, tomato paste and Parmesan cheese. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer 20 minutes. Remove from heat. Return beef to skillet and stir into sauce. Set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, for the Lasagna, mix ricotta, 1 1/2 cups of the mozzarella, 1/4 cup of the Parmesan cheese, eggs, Seasoning, salt (if desired) and pepper in a large bowl.
  3. Spread 1 1/2 cups of the sauce in bottom of 13×9-inch baking dish. Top with 1/4 of the lasagna noodles. Spread 1/3 of the cheese mixture over noodles. Top with 1 1/2 cups of sauce. Repeat layers two more times, ending with a layer of pasta and remaining sauce. Spray one side of a large sheet of foil with no stick cooking spray. Cover lasagna with foil, sprayed-side down.
  4. Bake for  35 minutes. Remove foil. Top with remaining  mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Increase oven temperature to 475°F. Bake 15 minutes longer, or until cheese is lightly browned. 
  5. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

Pumpkin Cookies 

( Keto Friendly ) 

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter . Softened at room temperature.
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar 
  • 1/3 cup of golden sweetener 
  • 1/2 cup 100% puréed pumpkin 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/2 cup blanched almond flour 

1 teaspoon of cinnamon 

  • 1 teaspoon of pumpkin spice 
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking power and 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda 
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

ICING 

  • 3oz of softened cream cheese 
  • 1 teaspoon powdered sweetener 
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract 

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    Cream the butter and sweeteners together in a mixing bowl using a hand mixer or standing mixer.
  2. Add in the pureed pumpkin, egg, and vanilla extract. Beat until creamy.
  3. Add the almond flour, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, baking powder, and salt to a separate bowl. Stir to combine. 
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until the mixture is combined. Do not over-mix. This will result in dry cookies.
  5. Form balls with the cookie dough about 1 1/2 tablespoons each. The dough will be wet and sticky. Using wet hands will help.
  6. Place  the balls on the baking mat. Flatten the cookies with the palm of your hand.
  7. Bake for 10-13 minutes. When checking in on the cookies they should look really soft, and have golden edges. 
  8. Allow the cookies to cool before placing on a cooking rack or moving them. If you move the cookies too soon this will cause them to crumble
  9. Allow the cookies to cool for an additional 15 minutes. Wait until cooled to apply icing. Be gentle while icing.

Icing 

1. Combine the ingredients and spread on the cookies.Add more cream cheese and confectioners sweetener as needed for a larger quantity of icing. 

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