Beg, Borrow & Meal: Cucumber Salad

This weekend we enjoyed the summer-like weather, by noshing on a refreshing cucumber & dill salad at local watering hole, Low Brau.

Cucumber Dill Salad @ LOW BRAU

At home, I recreated a version of my own using goat milk yogurt, tomato and green onions.

Mix two large spoonfuls of yogurt with one peeled and sliced cucumber, one sliced tomato, and 3 chopped green onions. Season with salt and pepper. As easy to prepare as it sounds!

Desperately Seeking Lasagna

My supply of vegetables was rather sad, and after setting my sights on lasagna, I realized the ground turkey had expired four days ago. In these situations, my instinct is to experiment and hope all goes well.

For this particular veggie lasagna, I simmered diced tomatoes seasoned with salt and pepper; and went to work on a sauce. I started by boiling frozen corn in chicken broth, to which I added some leftover goat cheese, a scoop of plain yogurt, and a generous amount of almond milk.


For the architecture of the lasagna, layer 1/3 tomatoes, followed by 1/3 corn mixture; sprinkle a layer of Parmesan, followed by three no-bake lasagna noodles. Repeat three times. Finish with more almond milk and parmesan to cover the top layer of noodles. (My top layer of noodles dried out, so make sure they’re covered in liquid.) Bake covered for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Cleaning out the Fridge: Turkey Lasagna with Yogurt Bechamel


Lasagna noodles saved dinner, once again. Hidden in the bowels in the cupboard, they’ve come to the rescue many times before, paired with unexpected partners like beans, goat cheese and butternut squash.

This time around, I used ground turkey, spinach and crushed tomatoes for the bolognese; and yogurt and almond milk to make a bechamel sauce, inspired by this eHow recipe. The sleeper hit? Cinnamon…

Turkey Lasagna with Yogurt Bechamel

In a large pan, sauté 1 chopped onion in 4 tbsp butter. Add fresh spinach by handfuls, and simmer on low.

In a separate nonstick pan, brown ground turkey. Add 1/4 tsp each of cinnamon and pepper; and 2 cans crushed/diced tomatoes. Reduce heat and bring to simmer. Add 1 cup almond milk and 1 tsp salt.

Combine turkey with spinach, simmer on low.

Meanwhile prep yogurt béchamel sauce:

In a sauce pan over medium heat, whisk together 4 tbsp olive oil and 4 tbsp white flour. Stir constantly until the mixture starts to bubble and turn a light golden color. Turn off heat.

Mix in 2 cups cold almond milk and 1 cup of yogurt. Stir constantly and turn a medium-high heat until the mixture starts to boil.

Add 1/3 cup of grated Gruyere cheese and 1/3 cup of Parmesan. Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and a sprinkling of nutmeg and black pepper. Mix together until melted and remove from heat.

For the layering, I used no-bake lasagna noodles, in the following order:


Bake covered with foil at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. Enjoy the smell of cinnamon throughout the house, and every time you heat up the leftovers!

Recipe Remix: “Hamburger” Casserole with Goat Cheese

Here’s another healthy take on the traditional hamburger sour cream casserole, this time using yogurt and goat cheese in place of sour cream and cream cheese. I also swapped in ground turkey, like last time. Can you tell my kitchen lighting and iPhone camera pixels have improved?!


“Hamburger” Casserole with Goat Cheese

Brown 1+ pound of ground turkey in skillet with 1 minced garlic clove. Add two cans of tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes, and simmer for 20 minutes or so. Meanwhile, boil a bag’s worth of egg noodles and drain. Next, stir together one bunch worth of sliced green onions with a 5 oz. cube of goat cheese and 1+ cup of yogurt, or enough to create a sauce. Layer all three (meat, noodles, sauce) in a casserole dish, and bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes. Stir halfway through baking so the noodles don’t get too try.

Bonus: leftovers for a couple of nights, depending on how hungry you are!

Defying the Laws of Leftovers

Two-timers are welcome in my kitchen. (See “Beg, Borrow and Meal” exhibits A, B, C, D and E.) And since we have burritos nearly every week, I often have a surplus of leftover, seasoned ground turkey (herein referred to as night #1).

I’ve experimented with leftover turkey before (exhibit F), but this time the stakes were higher, since I used a more traditional taco seasoning on night #1. Due to the complex layers of flavors – I presume – this pasta dish received rave reviews on night #2.


Here’s how it goes:

  • In a large pan, sauté half an onion (chopped) in olive oil until soft
  • Add minced garlic (1-2 cloves) and quickly follow with leftover ground turkey and 1/2 can white beans
  • Add 1/2 bag of clean, sliced mushrooms
  • When mushrooms are tender enough to your liking, add 1/2 stick butter and a couple spoonfuls of plain yogurt
  • Simmer on low and boil pasta of choice (I used spaghetti)
  • Add al dente pasta to mixture, and serve

On night #3, the other half of the white beans and mushrooms inspired me to create an antipasto salad using chopped salami, tomatoes, spinach, and dried oregano. I paired it with my favorite store-bought, 100% natural (and low-lactose) Wild Mushroom Ravioli.

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Buon appetito!

Crock Pot Pork Stroganoff

So I don’t spend that much time on Pinterest – honestly – because they don’t have an iPad app yet. But… I stumbled on this gem, Pulled Pork Stroganoff, and decided to put both my slow cooker and a pork tenderloin to use.


Here are a couple of adjustments I made:

  • Instead of garlic powder, I used two minced cloves
  • I swapped beef broth for chicken broth
  • I used goat cheese and yogurt in place of cream cheese and sour cream (low lactose and less fat to boot!)
  • For the pasta, I used spaghetti instead of tagliatelle; but if I had a choice, I would have used pappardelle

The results were much more universal than expected. After having stroganoff the first night, David proceed to make a burrito with leftovers, and on the final night I made sandwiches with sauteed bell peppers and cheddar. They were like delicious, gooey Philly cheese steaks. Yum!