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You would think a person like me, who took culinary classes at college level, would just love to cook all the time and does. Well the sad truth is, this mom still has no time, even with my cooking classes done, I am still finishing up the business degree. Even if I had the time, I don’t have the space at home to make the meals I would like to. So with time and space a huge issue I have to rely on quick meals for now. Barilla has made my job easy by sending me these great recipes for download and I decided to cook the Barilla No-Boil Lasagne with Marinara Sauce, Ground Beef and Bèchamel. I never tried a Bèchamel sauce with Lasagne before just shredded mozzarella. I hadn’t even made a Bèchamel in more than 6 months so I was up to the challenge. Barilla sent me some pastas and other goodies so that I could make a memorable pasta meal for my family!
As I was cooking I thought about the other busy moms out there like me, wondering if they look for ways to save time in cooking while delivering top flavor?
Did you know…
Increasingly hectic lives make at-home meal preparation more challenging than ever BUT it’s still important:
- 88% of parents are reliant upon multi-tasking each day and more than half (58%) say their life is more hectic now, than a year ago.
- While families are making time for dinner, Two-in-five meal-preparers agree it is difficult to find time to prepare dinner in their household.
- They don’t want to miss enjoying a home cooked meal with their family as they worry the alternative will offer poor nutritional content (74%) and they will miss out on family time at the table (65%).
Leading contributors to a hectic lifestyle, making meal-planning and preparation a challenge:
- 1) Work 2) Household chores 3) Errands 4) Kids’ after school activities 5) Kids’ homework
Pasta provides the perfect meal solution for time-limited households:
- Pasta is recognized by parents and non-parents as a tasty (88%) and easy (87%) meal option and one that can be prepared using on-hand ingredients from a pantry (82%).
- Other benefits of pasta that help alleviate chaotic schedules include that it is versatile (52%), a quick go-to meal (51%) and allows for multitasking while it’s cooking (44%).
(statitstics provided from Mom Central on behalf of Barilla)
I know for me the stats are pretty true, with both myself and my husband working from home and me still in college full time it’s HARD to make meaningful meals, but I do try. This lasagne was a good place to start, my family LOVED the flavor!
The no-boil noodles took off a good ten minutes from prep, and since the sauce can be made while the meat cooks, its really a pretty fast prep! We loved it, the pasta is a bit different than we are used to texture wise but it was so good, there weren’t leftovers by the end of the night!
- 1 box Barilla Oven-Ready Lasagne
- 1 jar Barilla Marinara Sauce
- 1 quart milk
- 7 tablespoons butter
- 5 tablespoons flour
- Salt, to taste
- Black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese,
- grated and divided
- 1 pound ground beef
- • PRE-HEAT oven to 400°F.
- • HEAT milk in a medium sized pot.
- • At the same time, in another similar sized pot, MELT the butter and
- whisk in the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- • Slowly WHISK the warm milk into the roux, bring to a simmer and
- season with salt and pepper.
- • REMOVE from heat and stir in ¾ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
- • Meanwhile, COOK the beef until slightly brown, add the marinara sauce and ½ jar
- of water, season with salt and black pepper and simmer until it is reduced in a large
- nonstick skillet.
- • SPRAY a 13 x 9 inch glass baking pan with cooking spray. On the bottom of the pan,
- PLACE ⅙ of the béchamel sauce and cover with 3 sheets of no-boil lasagne.
- • TOP with ⅙ of the béchamel and ⅕ of the meat sauce and continue alternating with
- the lasagne sheets for 4 more layers. The final layer should be béchamel topped with
- sauce and the remaining ¼ cup of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
- • BAKE for 20 minutes covered with foil, then uncovered for five more minutes or
- until the corners are brown and bubbling.
I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Barilla. I received product samples to facilitate my review and a promotional item as a thank-you for participating.