Thursday, June 3, 2010
I hate ME sometimes--I truly do. You know, I almost never make lasagna anymore. It's very time consuming, and it costs a fair bit, once you buy all of the necessary ingredients. Also, a local company makes several delicious variations of lasagnas, and theirs either is cheaper than homemade, or equally as expensive. Also, theirs is almost as yummy, so, why go to the trouble, right? I'll tell you why one goes to the trouble: arrogance.
So, today I am having my dad, my sister, and my nieces over for dinner. I'm going to make a masterful mushroom lasagna, I decided a couple of days ago. It's going to be fantastic! So, I bought the ricotta cheese, another package of mushrooms (already had one), a large package of Italian sausage to make an extra yummy sauce, a container of grated Romano cheese, some spinach, and some parsely.
I started at 10:00 this morning by first removing the casings from the amount of sausages I wanted to use, cutting them into smaller chunks, and then sauteeing them in olive oil until they were lovely and carmelized, along with a couple of cloves of minced garlic. Then I dumped in a very respectable jarred pasta sauce, some coarse-ground black pepper, a bay leaf, and a lot of dried basil. I simmered this concoction for about three hours.
Next I got two packages of sliced mushrooms, a third of a nice, sweet vidalia onion and another clove of garlic, and sauteed them for ages until the onions were nearly carmelized, and all of the liquid had cooked out of the veg. I chopped and added some fresh thyme whilst they were cooking, along with salt, and black pepper. When all the liquid had cooked away, I added a good glug of red wine to the mushroom mixture and cooked that until it was all absorbed, along with a pinch of sugar.
***ARE YOU BORED YET??
THEN, I mixed together in another bowl: ricotta cheese, an egg, some fresh-chopped parsley, dried basil, a lot of grated romano cheese, and some grated mozzarella cheese. I mixed this all together, and set it aside.
I then shlopped together a very hasty, phony bechamel sauce (stroke of genius, if I do say so myself), and set it aside.
AT LAST, I began assembling my lasagna: layer of yummo sauce on the bottom of a large casserole dish, a layer of noodles, then a layer of mushrooms and phony bechamel sauce, another layer of noodles, and then ricotta cheese...
OKAY, so you get it--it took a lot of time. By the time I was assembling my lasagna, it was getting close to 2:00. I was putting my last layer of noodles on, when SUDDENLY (and I wonder why it only happened at THAT moment...perhaps because I am the great cosmic joke) I stopped, and though; "hey, did I buy "oven-ready" lasagna noodles? Surely I did, right???
OF COURSE I DID NOT. I now have no idea how the frigging thing will turn out. I decided to try to salvage it (after I stood and just looked at it for ten minutes), by pouring piping hot sauce over the top later, and quickly sealing it with aluminum foil, hoping this might cook the thing a little bit before I put it in the oven. So, now I'm going to try to bake it for two hours at a slightly reduced heat, and PRAY that I don't serve LEATHER LASAGNA to my family.
So big deal, right? Yeah, it's not the end of the world, except I do this kind of thing all the time. This kind of stuff happens to me so often, I could weep.
* A couple of weeks ago, I made a gorgeous apple pie. The pastry was beautiful, it was piled high, and as soon as I put the top crust on I realised I'd forgotten the cinnamon.
* One year I made hot cross buns for Easter, and got them in the oven in time to realise I'd forgotten the salt
* the next year I made hot cross buns, I forgot the sugar
* Once I tried to make this fancy, rolled up, stuffed cod dish, whereby the fish cooked in chicken broth. I assembled and rolled up all the fish, cracked open the can of broth, poured it over the casserole and realised then that it was BEEF BROTH. Jon still says "Beef Fish" was the only truly bad meal I ever made
* The last meal I attempted to make for my mom was homemade chicken soup. She had been sick for a long time, and I thought I would make a soup that was just crammed with healing and restorative powers. I lovingly skimmed the fat off all day, and was about to strain out all the depleted soggy vegetables, and then replace them with fresh chopped, lovely veg. I put my FAVOURITE LARGE GLASS MIXING BOWL in the sink, colander on top, and brought my boiling hot soup over to pour through. My mom was sitting at the kitchen table and we were chatting. We were about 20 minutes away from eating dinner. As I began to pour I heard a loud "CRACK," as the bowl cracked, and all of my broth gurgled down the drain. I stood there with dropped jaw, staring in disbelief for ages.
I could fill pages with similar frustrations. Should any of this happen during PMS WEEK? SHOULD IT?!?!?!?
I just stuck the thing in the oven, and said to it; "Godspeed, A$$hole."