So yesterday afternoon I meet 3 other Iowa bloggers at The Red Avocado for lunch. A very hip, and trendy vegan restaurant. My first! If you can imagine there aren't too many vegan restaurants here in Iowa. After all, we are the land of beef and pork (and corn).
(Me, Erin, Kate & Christina)
My good friend Erin drove in from Des Moines, and Christina and Kate lived right in Iowa City. It was such fun! Neat to here their stories, what foods they like/dislike, what other food blogs they read, etc. Life long friends I'm sure (even though I was the oldest one there by seven years...)
Here are some pics of our food. I had the veggie burger with home fries and of course homemade mint chocolate chip ice cream for dessert. It was my first veggie burger (I know...) and it was pretty good. I will admit, I would have loved for a big juicy tomato and pickle, and maybe more of their "sauce" to accompany it, but overall pretty good!
Great afternoon with the "girls".
Last week I had promised my Brown Bottle Lasagna recipe. Not sure why I am saying "my" recipe, because I got it from my good friend Lori. I would like to think she snuck into their kitchen late at night and stole it, but if we all know Lori, that would NEVER happen. She doesn't break rules.
I am officially naming this my new lasagna. Out with the old recipe, and in with the new. It's a keeper! And I plan on using this sauce for my spaghetti as well, it's really good!
Meat sauce: 1 lb. hamburger, 2 cloves garlic, 1 T. parsley, 1 T. basil, 1 t. salt, 28 oz. can tomato sauce, 2 6 oz. cans tomato paste, 1/4 lb. thinly slice ham, 1/4 c. diced carrots
Cheese Mixture: 12 oz. cottage cheese, 2 beaten eggs, 1 t. salt, 1/2 T. parsley, 1/2 c. parmesan cheese, 1 lb. shredded mozzarella cheese
Brown hamburger meat, add all other sauce ingredients, simmer at least 45 minutes. Layer meat sauce, noodles, cheese mixture, etc. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 min.
Helpful hint: I made two small pans (one loaf, one 8x8) out of this recipe. Stick one in the freezer and you have an instant meal for one of those nights to crazy for dinner prep.