you complete me

There is only one thing in my kids’ mind when you ask them about their ultimate comfort food… it’s lasagna. (See below if you want to know my lasagna recipe). And what is lasagna without cheese, lots of cheese? My fridge is never without cheeses… cream cheese, quick melt cheese, cheddar and mozzarella.

Cheese makes everything delightful. It is so FLAVORFUL, so good, so addicting. It is so versatile too. It could be an appetizer, a dip, mixed with desserts and great for baking/cooking. Just thinking about it makes me want to grab for some bread right now and make a grilled cheese sandwich. Cheese… you complete me. Yum!

How about you? What’s your ultimate comfort food?

My lasagna recipe. (I’m sure i already blogged about this but i’m sharing it again)

As a busy mom, i oftentimes make shortcuts when cooking. So i use ready bake lasagna sheets and store bought spaghetti sauce when i cook the ground meat. I sometimes make use of mozzarella sheets if i have them. It’s not often available so grated mozzarella is the next best thing. If out of mozzarella or on a budget? I also make use of quick melt cheese.

For the white sauce. Just melt butter in pan, add some flour, stir to cook and slowly add milk. Stir to prevent lumps. Season with salt to taste or in my recipe i just drop a pork bouillon cube to add more flavor. You may add some cream too for that creamier texture. Bring it to boil with constant stirring to make it even more glossy.

For the ground meat. I usually buy a combination of pork and beef. Based on my own experience, purely ground beef results to an oilier meat sauce. Put ground meat on pan, add some salt, chopped garlic and onion. When cooked, stir in store bought spaghetti sauce. Give it a dash of italian seasoning, some salt if needed and a little sugar to balance acidity. Simmer and set aside.

For layering. Just alternate white sauce and ground meat on a baking pan adding some mozzarella if you want an ooey-gooey lasagna but quick melt cheese will do just fine. I bake it for about 40 minutes with the pan covered in foil at first to prevent burnt cheese topping then i remove the foil covering and bake it just a little more time until the topping has a golden glaze. (Tip: To test if your pasta is cooked, just pierce it with a toothpick or a chopstick and you will know and feel if it’s done.)

Cool… serve… and enjoy! Best paired with toasted french bread with garlic parsley butter spread.

Boots: Mom… did you just say LASAGNA?
Mom: Yuppp! Oh! I thought you’ve just eaten ’cause you still have food stains on your mouth, hahaha… 

tagged B: bread sculpture

Found this bread sculpture on display in one of the popular bread houses and i thought the turtle looks cute.

bread sculpture

bread sculpture

If you have interesting stories to tell or photos that start with Letter B, come and join the fun. Visit Frizz’s blog to know more about the A to Z Challenge.

my own version of egg tarts

I really love cooking and baking and here’s my first attempt in baking egg tarts. For a busy mom like me, i just used the store bought puff pastry dough.  I divided the 400g block into 12 equal sizes and pressed each one into the well-greased pan to form the mold.

egg tarts

For the filling, i made use of 6 large egg yolks, 1/4 cup sugar, half a teaspoon of vanilla extract, half a cup of heavy cream and half a cup of whole milk.  I just whisked it until smooth.  Don’t forget to strain the egg mixture to get rid of the bubbles to make your mixture more silky smooth.

Here they are, fresh from the oven.  I baked it for about 20-25minutes.  Be sure your oven is preheated to 200 degrees C.

egg tarts

I let it cool for a while and transferred each tart into cupcake paper liners.

egg tarts

I love the flakiness of the puff pastry dough.

egg tart

The filling has the right amount of sweetness, it is silky smooth with the right custardly melt in your mouth texture.  I am so happy because the kids love my tarts and for a newbie like me in baking, i feel good that i did well.

silky smooth egg tart

Craving for egg tarts?  No worries, now i could bake it myself.. i am so proud.

red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting

I made some red velvet cupcakes yesterday and here’s how they look.

red velvet cupcake

red velvet cupcake

red velvet cupcake

This is my first attempt in baking this goodie.  I would definitely try again since i want it to be more moist and melt-in-your-mouth with the help of tips i found in the net.  But for a green apple (newbie) like me in baking, i just feel proud of my creation and yes, they taste good and the kids love them.

cheezy tater tots

I’ve had some frozen tater tots sitting inside my freezer for quite sometime now and here’s what i did to make it super delectable and yummy.

Good thing that all the ingredients are readily available in my fridge and pantry.

  • ground pork
  • cheddar cheese (grated)
  • mozarella cheese (grated)
  • cheese sauce
  • bell pepper (diced)
  • onion (diced)
  • garlic (finely diced)
  • cream
  • salt and pepper to taste

Heat some oil in the pan, toss in the garlic followed by the onion, diced bell pepper and then the ground pork.  Season it with a little salt and some ground pepper.  Just let it cook for a while then add cream and cheese sauce plus the grated cheddar cheese.

In a rectangular baking pan, arrange a layer of tater tots then add some of the ground meat mixture, top with some grated cheddar and mozarella cheese.  Repeat procedure for the 2nd layer.   Cover the baking pan with foil and bake at 350 degrees.  After about an hour bake again uncovered for a few minutes more to make the cheese topping melt as well as give it a slight brown texture.

I was delighted about the outcome since my kids really loved it.

Sharing with you some photos of my creation.

cheezy tater tots

cheezy tater tots

cheezy tater tots