easy weeknight lasagna featuring TJ’s no-boil lasagna noodles

So you know how lasagnas are usually reserved for dinner on weekend nights? Well, not anymore! TJ’s recently (or maybe not, who knows? I just recently noticed it on the shelves so it’s recent to me) came out with sheets of No-Boil Lasagna Noodles that can be layered right into the baking pan without having to be boiled first. So although it’s not the best lasagna that I’ve made in my life, it’s still pretty good. But more importantly, and here’s the selling point, it’s one less pot to wash on a weeknight which makes it a YES in my book.

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Ingredients:

  • Trader Joe’s No-Boil Lasagna Noodles
  • 1-pound ground beef
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 28-ounce can San Marzano peeled tomatoes
  • Tomato paste
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Ricotta
  • Parmesan
  • Basil, chiffonade plus whole leaves for serving

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. In the meantime, brown the ground beef in a saucepan over high heat. When the meat is browned, add in the onions, garlic and entire can of San Marzano peeled tomatoes. Lower the heat to medium and let everything cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes break down. Add in the tomato paste, salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Continue stirring and cooking down the sauce until it reaches your desired consistency.

Now it’s time to layer your lasagna! Grab your baking pan and spread enough sauce to cover the bottom of the pan. On top of that goes your first sheet of lasagna noodles. Then sauce again, followed by ricotta, Parmesan, chiffonade(d?) basil, and lasagna noodles. Repeat with as many layers as will fit in your baking pan, leaving about 1/2-inch at the top to prevent overflow. Bake the lasagna in the oven until cooked through, about 45 minutes. Remove from the oven, slice, and serve with an optional basil leaf for garnish.

Hopefully you have enough sauce to get you through! I didn’t make it, as you can see by that dried-out piece of noodle peeking through the cheese on my top layer ><.

pan-seared salmon w/ oven-roasted asparagus

Looking for a quick and easy recipe on a Monday night? I’d recommend you give my pan-seared salmon with oven-roasted asparagus dinner a try! From the time you pop the asparagus into the oven, you can count on sitting down to a delicious dinner in under 30 minutes.

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Ingredients:

  • asparagus
  • salmon fillet
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • half a lemon, for serving, optional

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. In the meantime, rub enough olive oil to coat each stalk of asparagus and season with salt and pepper. Line them in a single layer on a baking sheet and pop into the oven until cooked through, 10 to 15 minutes.

While the asparagus is roasting in the oven, heat a pan over high heat. Season the salmon fillet on both sides with salt and pepper. Add about a tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and sear the salmon (presentation side down first) on both sides until desired consistency. For me, about 4 minutes per side for a 1.5 inch salmon is perfect. Plate with half a lemon, optional for the asparagus, and enjoy!

bacon-wrapped enoki mushrooms

The strong bacon-y (seriously can’t think of another adjective right now…) flavor of the bacon is complemented by the mild sweetness of the enoki mushrooms in this crowd-pleasing (unless your guests are vegans) appetizer!

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Ingredients:

  • Enoki mushrooms, washed and stemmed
  • Bacon slices, halved
  • Soy sauce, for drizzling

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Separate the enoki mushrooms into small bundles and tightly wrap each bundle, starting at the base, with half a bacon slice. Lay each bundle on a baking sheet, leaving an inch between each one. Drizzle the tips of the enoki mushrooms with soy sauce and transfer to the oven. Bake until the bacon is crispy, 15 to 20 minutes.

 

 

roasted brussel sprouts

Roasting in the oven is one of my favorite ways of cooking brussel sprouts! The prep time is only a matter of minutes and the end result is an oh-so-satisfying nutty and crunchy bite. My advice to you on this dish is SEASON AGGRESSIVELY. Salt makes all the difference.

brussels

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chicken parmesan

For me, Chicken Parmesan reads filling and comforting, especially when topped off with a good dose of melted mozzarella and parmesan cheese! I use store-bought tomato marinara basil sauce from Trader Joe’s and make it chunkier by adding in diced onions and tomatoes.

chicken

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pan-seared salmon w/ sautéed hericots verts & garlic

This simple lunch (or dinner!) will take you less than 30 minutes to put together. For the salmon, follow this pan-seared salmon recipe to get the salmon going while you cook up the hericots verts following the recipe below.

salmon greens

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