Galley: 1) the kitchen of a boat. Sally: 1) a venture off the beaten path, 2) a military action in which besieged troops burst forth from their position, 3) a witty remark.

Friday, January 14, 2011

No Oven/No Mess Lasagna

Our next door neighbor, also a live aboard, has one of these: Viking Freestanding Range
I might not have the exact model on display, but you get the idea (and you get the idea that I have a wee bit of stove envy).

Our own galley has a three burner propane range. No oven. But let this not be a complaint (plus a new one is on the way)! Let it be an incentive for invention. Last year I created peanut butter brownie pancakes, a method for no-bake brownies. Last Wednesday night, with ingredients on hand, I created the No Oven/No Mess Lasagna. No matter where you are, less mess is nice. But on a boat, where water is often at a premium and dishwashers are rare, it becomes even more important.

So, no oven, but you do need a Dutch Oven. We are lucky enough to have a gorgeous, red, enameled cast iron one, given to us by wonderful friends. Here is the recipe. Not gourmet, but about as easy and inexpensive as it gets.

No Oven/No Mess Lasagna

4-5 adult servings

1 1/2 Jars ready made pasta sauce (I used Prego's Italian Sausage and Garlic)
1 lb. Small-curd Cottage cheese (if you have Ricotta, go for it!)
10 lasagna noodles
~1/3 1b. shredded cheddar cheese (or more to taste)
1 T. olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt

1) Boil water, olive oil and salt. Add lasagna noodles and boil approx. 8 mins.
2) While lasagna noodles cook, grate cheddar cheese.
3) Drain lasagna noodles into colander. Pour pasta sauce and cottage cheese into pot formerly occupied by noodles. Stir and warm gently.
4) Time to layer! A little sauce mixture into the bottom of the dutch oven, followed by two lasagna noodles side by side. Spread more sauce over noodles and a layer of cheddar cheese, then two more noodles. Repeat! With ten noodles you will have five noodle layers (assuming your dutch oven is roughly the same size as mine...)
5) Be sure to end with sauce and set aside enough cheese for a final, topping layer.
6) Cover your creation and adjust burner to not quite low, but close to low. The most difficult part of this recipe is getting its entirety bubbly hot without burning the bottom. Listen/Check for bubbling.
7) Once it is bubbling, turn burner to a low low and add final layer of cheese. When cheese has melted, turn off burner and allow to sit covered for five minutes. Time to eat!

Clearly, there are many yummy things that could be added to this recipe. While making it I dreamed of a layer of sauteed onions and spinach. But this is a base, and we all enjoyed dinner.

P.S. I'm a newbie. I didn't take any pictures, but I'll get better about this!

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