Category Archives: appetizer

Mini Lasagna


I am a sucker for all things mini.  You things I can just pop in my mouth and devour instantly. 🙂  When I first found these cute, compact mini lasagna bites,(here) I knew my life would never be the same. But it took me awhile to actually make them.  It’s been so warm until recently that the thought of cooking in the oven didn’t appeal to me.  However..cooler weather has arrived and these, my friends, were first on my list of things to make.

I don’t know about you, but sometimes when I think about making lasagna overwhelms me.  All the layers, the long’s just too much.  What I love about these is how simple they are to make. Let’s get started, shall we?

The Ingredients:

12 oz raw ground turkey (I used ground lean hamburger.)
¼ tsp salt, divided
¼ tsp pepper
1 cup chopped onion
½ cup chopped mushrooms (we aren’t mushroom people so didn’t use these.)
14.5 oz can crushed tomatoes, or tomato sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tsp dried oregano, divided
½ tsp dried basil
1 ½ cups part skim ricotta cheese
24 small square wonton wrappers (found near the tofu in the refrigerated section of the produce dept)
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

The How-To:

*Preheat oven to 375ºF.
* Heat a large skillet over medium heat.
*Add the turkey (or hamburger), onions, mushrooms, salt, and pepper. Crumble the meat and saute the mixture  until it is cooked through.
*Add the garlic and stir constantly for 30 seconds.
*Add the crushed tomatoes and 2 tsp of oregano.
*Bring the pan to a gentle boil.
*Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes.
*Remove from heat and set aside.

*In a separate large bowl, combine the ricotta, a pinch of salt and pepper, the remaining teaspoon of oregano, and the basil. Stir to mix well. Set aside.

*Coat a 12-cup muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray. Place 1 wonton wrapper into each of the 12 cups, pressing firmly in the bottom of the cup and up the sides. (The wonton wrappers are a bit tricky to separate, but using only ONE per layer is the way to go.  Trust me. :D)

*Using half of the ricotta mixture, divide it among the 12 muffin cups.
*Spoon half of the meat/tomato sauce, spoon it evenly over each of the ricotta filled cups. Sprinkle with 2 tsp of mozzarella.
*Gently press another wonton wrapper on top of the mozzarella layer. (again..only ONE)
*Repeat the process by distributing the remaining ricotta, then the remaining meat/tomato sauce, and finally the rest of the shredded mozzarella.

*Bake for 10 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and wonton wrappers are crispy.
*When the cups have cooled, it’s time to devour. 😀

One of the best things about these, is that you can use them for dinner, lunch, an appetizer or a side.  Which, to me, means you can eat them all day long. 😀


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Cowboy Caviar

A few weeks ago we went to a work BBQ for my hubby.  We needed to bring an appetizer.  I don’t do appetizers.  I like desserts.  Lots of desserts.  This was a challenge for me.  I wanted something….dinner-y, yet not a ton of work.  Suddenly inspiration hit.  My bff from, well, my whole life, texted me and gave me this recipe.  I’m sure there’s a few out there that are similar to this, but she called it “Cowboy Caviar.”  And let me just was out of this world.  It’s one of those dishes that you look at it and think, “Yeah, I’ll get it on the next go-around”.  But when you finally take a bite of it..BOOM!!  A little fiesta for your taste buds!!  It was perfect, so much so that several people wanted the recipe.  This is when the devilish side in me came out and really, really, REALLY had to force myself to hand over the recipe.

What I love most is that I have all the ingredients on hand.  No joke. It’s simple, quick, and oh so tasty.  Served with corn chips (we use Scoops Frito Chips) truly is a match made in heaven. 

With football season can’t go wrong if you need to take this to a football party!

The Ingredients:
Cowboy Caviar
1 can shoepeg corn ( sometimes in Mexican aisle) or can use white corn
1 can black eyed peas
3 Roma tomatoes chopped
1 bunch cilantro chopped very small
1 small  bunch green onions chopped- just the green part
2 or 3 avocados cut up small pieces
1 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp black pepper
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic ( I use the already cut up version in the jars)
1 bag Fritos Scoops Chips

The How-To:
Chop everything up.  Add the drained beans and dressing (or vinegar and oil). Mix well & it’s best served cold. Serve with chips- the scoops work best!

(FYI: When I made it, I omitted the corn and avocados, and instead of using the vinegar and oil, I used Catalina Salad Dressing. Either way..YUMMMM-O!)

Serve as an appetizer or heck…go ahead and have it for dinner. I know I may..or may not.. have done that several times since making it a few weeks ago.

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Filed under appetizer, sides