Friday, December 31, 2010

Cheese Ravioli Lasagna

Easy and very tastey. This was a win all the way around!

What's Needed:

2 24 oz. jars pasta sauce with tomato and basil
12 oz. bulk Italian sausage
2 C. chopped tomatoes
1 15-oz. carton ricotta cheese
1/2 C. milk
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 9-oz. packages refrigerated light cheese-filled ravioli
1 1/2 C. shredded part-skim mozzerella cheese

1. Preheat oven to 375. Spread about 1/2 C. of the pasta sauce in the bottom of an ungreased 9x13-inch baking dish. Set the remaining pasta sauce aside.

2. In a skillet, cook sausage over medium-high heat until cooked through. Drain off fat. Stir the remaining pasta sauce and chopped tomatoes into cooked sausage; set aside.

3. In a medium bowl, combine ricatta cheese, milk, nutmeg; set aside.

4. Layer half of the uncooked ravioli over pasta sauce in baking dish. Spoon half of the sausag emixture over ravioli in dish; sprinkle with half of the mozzarella cheese. Top with remaining ravioli; spoon ricotta mixture over ravioli and top with remaining meat sauce.

5. Bake, covered, for 30 minutes. Uncover; sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese. Bake, uncovered, about 15 minutes more or until heated through and ravioli is cooked. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. If desired, top with Parmesan cheese and parsley.

Serves 10.

Husband's Grade: A+
PointsPlus: 11

Inspired by: 9x13: The Pan That Can

Cinnamon Rolls

Is there anything more perfect than the smell of freshly baked cinnamon rolls coming out of the oven? I think not. That smell brings back many happy childhood memories. My mom would make those every time my Nana and Papa came to town because Papa loved them so much. This is officially my new Christmas Eve tradition--cinnamon rolls for breakfast. Boy, were they a hit!

What's Needed:
4 1/2 - 5 C. All-purpose flour
1 package active dry yeast
1 C. milk
1/3 C. butter
1/3 C. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
3 eggs
3/4 C. packed brown sugar
1/4 C. all-purpose flour
1 T. ground cinnamon
1/2 C. butter

For the Powdered Sugar Icing:
1 C. powdered sugar
1 T. milk
1/4 tsp. vanilla

1. In a large bowl, combine 2 1/4 C. of the flour and the yeast; set aside.

2. In a small saucepan, combine the milk, 1/3 C. butter, granulated sugar, and salt; heat and stir just until warm (120-130 F) and butter is almost melted.

3. Add to flour mixture. Add eggs. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds, scraping side of bowl constantly. Beat on high speed for 3 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can.

4. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough of the remaining flour to make a moderately soft dough that is smooth and elastic (3-5 minutes total). Shape into ball. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the surface. Cover; let rise in a warm place until double in size (1 1/2 to 1 3/4 hours).

5. Punch down dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, lightly grease a 9x13-inch baking pan; set aside.

6. For the filling, in a small bowl, combine brown sugar, the 1/4 C. flour and the cinnamon. Using a pastry blender, cut in the 1/2 C. butter until crumbly.

7. Roll out dough into a 12x18-inch rectangle. Sprinkle filling over dough. STarting from a long side, roll up dough rectangle into a spiral. Press seam to seal. Cut spiral into 12 equal pieces. Arrange slices, cut sides up, in prepared pan.

8. Loosely cover; let dough rise in a warm place until nearly double in size (about 45 minutes).

9. Preheat oven to 375. Break any surface bubbles with a greased toothpick. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Carefully invert cinnamon rolls onto a wire rack; remove pan. Cool slightly. Invert again onto a serving platter.

10. Make the icing by combining all ingredients in a small bowl. Stir in additional milk, 1 tsp. at a time, until icing is of drizzling consistency.

Husband's Grade: A
PointsPlus: 10 (but oh, so worth it!)

Inspired by: 9x13: The Pan That Can

Stir-Fried Shrimp and Broccoli

I'm not really one who likes seafood, but my husband loves it. I don't dislike shrimp, but it's not exactly my favorite. This dish sounded wonderful, so I decided to give it a whirl. It was a hit with the grown-ups. Joey's portion ended up on the floor :)

What's Needed:

1 pound fresh or frozen medium shrimp (mine was frozen and pre-cooked. Much easier)
1/3 C. water
1/4 C. soy sauce
2 T. cider vinegar
1 T. cornstarch
1 1/2 tsp. sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. cooking oil
2 C. broccoli (I used frozen, chopped broccoli)
1 C. frozen carrots
1 small onion, diced
1 C. brown rice, raw
1/4 C. cashews

1. Put brown rice and two cups water in a pot. Bring to a boil, then cover and let simmer for 40 minutes or so.

2. Thaw shrimp if frozen. Rinse shrimp, pat dry with paper towels. Set aside. In a small bowl, combine water, soy sauce, vinegar, cornstarch, and sugar. Set aside

3. In a 12-inch skillet (or wok if you have one) cook and stir garlic in hot oil over medium-high heat for 15 seconds. Add broccoli, carrot, and onion. Stir and cook for 3-5 minutes, or until vegetables are crisp-tender. Remove vegetables with a slotted spoon and set aside.

4. Stir soy sauce mixture. Add to skillet; cook and stir until slightly thickened and bubbly. Add shrimp; cook about 3 minutes. Stir in vegetables; heat through. Serve with rice and sprinkle with cashews.

Serves: 4 Serving Size: 1 C. shrimp/veggie mix and 1/2 C. rice

Husband's Grade: B+
PointsPlus: 7

Inspired by: Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book

Monday, December 20, 2010


In the next couple of weeks, I will be editing all my recipes (and will be adding new ones soon!) to match the new Weight Watchers PointsPlus system.

You will also be able to search for PointsPlus points. This way, if you know how many points you have left for dinner, you can search for a meal to match! :)