Friday, September 20, 2013

The Week in Recap and a Recipe for Lasagna Soup!!

Another week has flown by! We are up to our ears in remodeling and loving it!! The guys have torn it up! It's so fun to walk in to the new house and see changes. And it's a shock to see how much incredibly hard work goes into it! We are very, very grateful to my Dad, Mom, and Jordan, who are doing all the work.

As of this week, the kitchen is gutted and ready for rebuilding. Dad's been moving the plumbing and electricity, so that it's where we need it. Yesterday we ordered the cabinetry (can you say OUCH!!), so I'll be delivering the blueprints for that to Dad today. They're gorgeous :-) and I can't wait to see them in! We're doing one whole wall of cabinetry, then we'll have the center island (12' by 5') with more cabinetry. The sink and dishwasher will be in the island, along with a couple refrigerators at the end. Lots and lots of outlets on the island, as that's my work space. :-)  The former pantry is being converted into a bookshelf for my (many, many) cookbooks and such. We're doing a barn door over that (Bill and I will be building that - fun!).

In the master, the guys gutted the bath, opened up the former walk-in closet and tore down those walls, tore out the shower and tub. We're putting in a whole new bathroom! YAY!!! So excited. Bought the new shower heads this week, picked out the tile and accent. Need to pick up glass block for the window. Ordered the vessel sinks for the counter, ordered the vanity cabinetry. Need to decide on lighting for in there.

In the backyard, the pool fence is all down, though we still need to pull posts. We'll re-purpose some of that fencing for a dog yard on the side of the house.

The wood flooring arrived this week, and that's ready to go in. Our doors (sliding patio doors) arrive next week, and once those are installed, we can paint, then lay flooring. The cabinetry is set to be delivered mid-October. And yes - I am beyond excited!!! The hubby is working hard to perfect my huge countertop and baseboards - the mixture of rock and fire glass is absolutely gorgeous! I can't wait to see it all in place!  I can't wait to hold my first clean-eating-cooking class in there!! Woot!!

There's a million things to do, tons to research, and of course there's the constant reworking numbers to get it all to fit in budget. Seriously - I had no idea how expensive lighting was. OMG. Apparently I'm in the wrong business, lol!  It's funny how you think you want something until you see the price tag. Yeah, I can live without that. LOL! And is like my crack-dealer. I keep finding all these wonderful ideas and products, then have to go outside of Houzz to find them at normal-people-pricing, haha. Yes - I'm having a blast!

In other news... with Shiloh settled into San Diego with her new husband, my husband isn't getting any of his favored Lasagna ;-)  I'm just not a lasagna person, and haven't found an acceptable clean recipe to remake it. Shi was the only one who'd make him lasagna, lol.  Well... in the current issue of Food Magazine, I found this interesting recipe for Lasagna Soup. Hmmmm,  I thought, I might be able to do something with this... and so I did. I gave that recipe the Recipe For Fitness makeover and it was BOMB!! OMG! We went through the whole pot that night! Bill raved over it, the kids inhaled it, I had seconds! SO good!! I passed it on to Shiloh so she can make it for her hubby ;-)  It comes together in 30 minutes if you have 2 working stove burners. Since I only have one (I cannot wait to move to my new kitchen!!!), it took me longer, but it was so worth it! Here you go...

Photograph by Johnny Miller
8 oz Whole Wheat Lasagna Noodles
1 tbsp Olive Oil, Extra Virgin
1 medium Onion, Raw
1.25 lb Ground Turkey Italian Sausage, Ultra Lean, Raw
5 clove Garlic, Raw
1 tsp Oregano
2 tbsp Tomato Paste
4 cup Organic Low Sodium Chicken Broth
15 oz Fire Roasted Crushed Tomatoes
1/2 cup Basil, Fresh, Chopped
1/3 cup Parmesan Cheese, Shredded, Fresh
1/3 cup Half & Half (the real stuff, not the fat free - compare the labels, the fat free is a chemi-soup!)
6 tbsp Cottage Cheese 2%

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the noodles and cook as the label directs. Drain; drizzle with olive oil and toss.
Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until softened, about 4 minutes.
Add the sausage, garlic and oregano and cook, stirring and breaking up the sausage with a wooden spoon, until the sausage is browned, about 3 minutes.
Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until darkened, about 2 minutes.
Add the chicken broth, tomatoes and 1 cup water; cover and bring to a simmer. Uncover and cook until slightly reduced, about 10 minutes.
Stir in the noodles, basil, parmesan and heavy cream; simmer 2 more minutes.
Divide the soup among bowls. Top with cottage cheese (or ricotta) and a bit of sliced basil.

NOTE: If you don't like onions, replace the chopped onion with 2 Tbsp of dried minced onion. You'll get the flavor the recipe needs without any of the onion texture.

NUTRITION: per serving, 350 calories, 35 grams protein, 37 grams carbohydrate, 9 grams fat, 430 mg sodium, 7 grams fiber. 35 grams net carbohydrates (carbohydrate minus fiber).

Original Recipe found here. This recipe (above) has been changed from the original by Chelle Stafford / Recipe For Fitness.

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