Day 83: My Favorite Spinach Turkey Lasagna
Ah friends. I had such high hopes for getting Monday off to a great start. You know that feeling where you think you have your day planned perfectly, and then you're thrown a bunch of curve balls that sort of derail your plans? Well, that's been my morning.
But let me start with the positive: I had a wonderful weekend, catching up with dear friends, going for a run (in the balmy 55-degree weather!), recharging with some reading and journaling, and then did some serious cleaning after my week of cooking and shooting. I finished writing a magazine story whose deadline has been looming, and submitted it this morning (woo hoo!). And I've been busy planning some fun surprises for Brandon's birthday this weekend – including a little Miami getaway! I'm heading down to FL tomorrow to be with him the last few days of his hyperbaric treatments, and then the plan is that we'll drive down to Miami on Friday.
And then, everything sort of started unraveling. The hotel fell through (apparently everything in Miami is booked this weekend) and instead of writing my blog post, I've been scrambling the past few hours to find another place for us to stay. I know it will all work out, but it's stressful trying to figure out a Plan B at the last minute. But sometimes you just have to take a deep breath and "shake it off" as Florence Welch would say!
But in the meantime, let's talk about lasagna. This is one of my all-time favorite comfort foods. It's hearty, winter soul food, and the perfect dish to share with friends on a cold night (prefarably with a good Tuscan red). Lasagna isn't exactly the lightest of fare, but I like to make mine with turkey in lieu of beef, skip the Bechemel sauce, and add in lots of vegetables, like turkey, carrots, and celery. And I make a really delicious red sauce, with plenty of fresh basil, to make it all taste especially flavorful.
I made this lasagna recently for two sets of friends, both who have new babies (the third for each family!). They live close to each other in Brooklyn, so I just made two batches so I could drop off one with each. There's nothing's quite so wonderful as snuggling with a new baby, so taking dinner is really just my ploy to get in some cuddle time! It was so sweet, though - both families wouldn't let me just drop off dinner. They poured me a glass of wine and insisted that I stay and eat with them, so I ended up having back-to-back lasagna dinners! And somehow, I still love this recipe...
A quick note: this dish doesn't exactly fall into the "30-minute-weeknight-meal" category, given that I make the sauce from scratch, and then it has to bake for 45 minutes. But it's just the thing to make up on the weekend for a dinner party, and then to eat the leftovers (if there are any!) for lunch during the week. Serve this with a big green salad, or with sauteed broccoli rabe with raisins and pine nuts.
(Photos by Signe Birck)[recipe:best-spinach-turkey-lasagna-recipe]