food + books = love.

And, in some cases, survival. For second time in two weeks, I’ve made a big huge leftover-friendly meal on Monday night in order to get myself through the week. Last week, it was vegetable noodle soup – this week, I brought back an old favorite. Quick and easy lasagna, recipe courtesy of my mom’s friend Tammy.

I first had this lasanga on one of our “girls week” trips to Emerald Isle, North Carolina. When we go, we usually take turns cooking – everybody cooks one night, and we go out once or twice. It works out perfectly every year! On Tammy’s night to cook, I was in awe of her delicious lasagna. I liked it even more when she taught me how to make it! It’s easy, and faster than you’d think. The shortcuts include cottage cheese and uncooked pasta – sounds weird, right? Maybe, but it’s so good. Tastes just like dinner out at an Italian restaurant! Here’s what it looks like straight out of the oven:

Can’t you just smell it? I use parmesan cheese on top, which makes it a little chewy and a little crunchy, and a lot perfect. It’ll be nice to have this week at about 10:00pm at McGs, when I finally realize how famished I am and the guys in the kitchen are too grumpy to make me anything.

In other news, I’m constantly reminded lately why I never have quite enough bookshelf space. Today was no exception. I’ve been missing reading lately – it’s always been a huge part of my life and of me, and recently with the all the grad school applications and other assorted hoopla, I’ve been having less and less time to spend with words on paper. I’m ready to get back to it, though, and went to Barnes & Noble this morning to spend some of last week’s hard-earned cash. I came away with these:

Olive Kitteridge is by Elizabeth Strout, mentioned previously on the back burner, and Page After Page by Heather Sellers is a book written about writing. Recommended to me by my dear friend Helen, it seems (so far) like the perfect mix of conversation, suggestion, and of course, prompts! I’m loving it already. I’m waiting to start Olive Kitteridge, which Helen is actually going to read at the same time, until I can actually concentrate on it, aka until at least Sunday. I think that sitting down to read a really great book will be just the deep breath I need come the end of the week.

Anyway, I hope nobody’s got a case of the Monday blues today – get excited, the sunshine forecast for the rest of the week is higher than high. I’ll be inside for much of it – slinging brews tomorrow night and then fighting through the crowds with overflowing bowls of Irish Stew on Wednesday and Thursday – but I’ll still feel it in my fingers (and feel it in my toes). And I can’t wait. One exhausting week down, less than one to go. Here I go. :)

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5 Comments

Filed under the back burner.

5 responses to “food + books = love.

  1. R

    Hm…Olive Kitteridge looks good. Maybe I should read it.

  2. R, read it with us! I’m starting (hopefully) this weekend…

    • R

      Alright, I need to buy it, though; I could start it on Monday or something. And I need to meet Helen; it’s strange, I feel like we’re friends, but I don’t even know her. Dangit.

  3. Helen

    The feeling is mutual, R. Let’s make it official.

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