Posted in Food, Funny Stuff, Home, Recipes

The Everyman’s Guide to Lasagna

Ready and Willing?

I make a mean lasagna. I don’t go for the bottled tomato sauce crap, unless I’m really in a hurry and the bottled sauce is from Trader Joe’s or some other food snob establishment. Everything’s fresh and takes forever. And, most of my lasagna is vegetarian. Why? I saw the recipe in The Moosewood Cookbook, that’s why.  ’nuff said. The Moosewood Cookbooks are incredible enough to turn me into a vegetarian forever if I so desire.

Every now and again, though, someone else has to make dinner. That job often falls to the hubby, oh he of the burned garlic and overcooked bacon. I drink more beer on those nights and try to make the best of it. He does try his best: it’s just not the priority and creative endeavor that it is for me.

I think I may have found the perfect cookbook for him. It’s part of a guy’s sports web magazine called Deadspin with its own “Foodspin” section. Yes, I’ve found just the thing:

“Lasagna’s perfect for this. In addition to being outrageously tasty, it is a nutritional atom bomb (the Food and Drug Administration estimates that a single serving of lasagna contains seven hundred trillion calories, ∞ percent of an adult’s recommended daily allowance of simple carbohydrates, and all the grams of fat that exist or have ever existed), and it is overwhelmingly likely to place its eater into a state of inactivity not unlike hibernation, but which the medical community stubbornly insists upon calling “a diabetic coma.”

This approach is right up my guy’s kitchen-shattering alley. Throw as much high-fat s**it as you can and – dammit! – wait for the right time to boil the pasta (we might have to work on this one. He’s ever so fond of bloated rice and noodles that you can squeeze to a paste). They do warn you, so that’s a start:

“Meat mostly browned? Add some finely chopped onion and minced garlic to it, as well as a light drizzle of olive oil, and cook this stuff until the onion is softened and starting to turn translucent. Now you’re gonna turn this into a basic ragù by adding a can of whole tomatoes (San Marzano are best, but the crummy store-brand variety is perfectly fine, too), a small can of tomato paste, a couple glugs of cheap red wine, and—yes, goddammit, yes!—three or four or five or six anchovy fillets. Thoroughly crush the tomatoes with your mighty Kitchen Implement Of Choice (wooden spoon, spatula, the alarming flanged mace that earned you the nickname “That Psycho With The, Like, War-Club Or Whatever That Thing Is, Oh God Call Security”), bring this concoction to a boil, then reduce it to a simmer and leave it alone for a while so its flavors can hang out together and the liquid can reduce a bit.

Your oven is preheating and your ragù is simmering happily and your pasta water is (maybe) coming to a boil (even though you are not ready to put pasta into it no seriously put the fucking pasta down).”

Yessssss! (Does football touchdown dance). But will my husband follow these instructions? Or would he make it his manly duty to ignore it: full speed ahead and damn the kitchen stove?

Hey, wait a minute. Does that mean I finally get to buy a new kitchen stove after he’s done? Oh, cook that s**it, man!

How To Make A Lasagna And Prepare For Hibernation

Let your male other try it and see if you’re kitchen’s still there when he’s done. We might be on to something, ladies.


Writer, Walker, Entrepreneur, baby-boomer

5 thoughts on “The Everyman’s Guide to Lasagna

  1. HEY! I’m the cook, she’s the baker. Y’know, like Will Smith and DJ “Jazzy” Jeff (He’s the DJ, I’m the rapper). Cimmy and I are known to collaborate, too, such as meat pies and stews with dumplings. We cross over sometimes; she cooks a bit and I bake.

    I know some “man’s man” and Martha Stewart-type homemaker stereotypes persist, but Margy, I think things are changing. When I helped prepare a church lady cookbook, I found at least one other couple our age that delegated kinda like we did: he grilled and baked, she cooked. Then again, I’m not sure everyone of the generation previous to me followed the stereotypes well: my mother had a very odd way of expressing her mixture of pride and jealousy over my developing skills and interest in cooking.

      1. I finally looked up the Deadspin article (first the lasagna one, then some other recipes). I have to level with you, Margy, I glean that Albert Burneko actually knows what he’s talking about, but he sounds like a closeted hypermasculine man trying to convince his uptight buddies he’s not gay. Strip away the fake swagger and braggadocio, and it’s garden variety cooking instructions.

        You’re in New England– why not trust that guy from Vermont? Y’know, Christopher Kimball and the America’s Test Kitchen shows. I joke that they put everything in a skillet or pot and then in the oven, or that Christopher Kimball really means “the efficient way” rather than “the right way”, but their skillet modification of lasagna actually works. It really does come to mind for “easy”, and that’s anyone, I find, not just “traditional guys that would rather grunt and cook over an open flame than do chefy stuff in the kitchen”.

      2. p.s. sorry Margy, but then I read the comments and said, “oh yeah, I want to do baked ziti” and “hell yeah, I do think ziti WOULD be 10X easier.”

        Traditional lasagna struck me as “fussy pain in the ass”, and so, I don’t do it. Pizza from scratch is “fussy pain in the ass” too, but my family (even Boy, who gets picky sometimes with the autism thing) usually loves my pizza even when it doesn’t come out the way I want. Except when Princess gave me a bad review once. Then I swore a blue streak.

  2. LOL.
    And I’d like that mean vegetarian lasagne recipe please. There’s nothing my family likes better than diabetic coma.

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