In the Kitchen: That's Amore for Valentine’s Day

Raffaldini+wine.jpg

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and we decided that there’s no better time to bring back our In the Kitchen series with a new recipe and wine pairing. Love is in the air this time of the month. Will you be buying your loved one some mouth-watering chocolates, a bouquet of flowers or a nice bottle of wine? Whatever it may be we hope it’s something to remember.

For us, we decided to pair a bottle of Raffaldini Vineyards’ SPQR Red Wine and make a three-meat lasagna. A nice Italian-style meal with a side Caesar salad. The lasagna was pretty easy to make – here is the recipe.

Take 1 pound of ground beef, and blend that with another pound of sweet Italian sausage and hot Italian sausage (half pound of each). Cut up a medium sized yellow onion and add to the meat mixture, adding salt and pepper to taste. Set the oven to 375 degrees. Add one 28-oz. can of your favorite chopped tomatoes with the juice as well as a 12 oz-can of tomato paste. Add 1/4 cup water, 2 teaspoons sugar, 1 teaspoon basil and 1/2 teaspoon fennel – bring to boil, then simmer for 15-20 minutes.

In a bowl, combine 1 large egg (whisked) with 15-oz ricotta cheese, 1 tablespoon finely minced parsley and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Blend together.

We decided to save some time and purchased a box of oven-ready lasagna noodles. Take a 13x9 baking dish and put a small layer of the meat mixture on the bottom. Then take three lasagna strips and lay them on the meat mixture. Then put 2 cups of meat mixture on top of the noddles then 2/3 cups of the ricotta, then 2/3 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese and 1/4 cup of shredded asiago cheese. Repeat this process until your out of ingredients.

Lasagna.jpg

Cover the lasagna with foil and cook for 40 minutes. After 40 minutes remove the foil and cook for another 15-20 minutes. Keep an eye on the lasagna to make sure the cheese doesn’t burn.

This meaty dish was very filling and paired well with the rustic taste of the Sangiovese in the wine. If you are interested in making this meal, and don’t have Raffaldini’s SPQR, we suggest any good Sangiovese wine – and if you can keep it local, do so with a nice North Carolina wine.

And for dessert, we paid a visit to Krispy Kreme Doughnuts for its heart-shaped doughnuts filled with strawberry and chocolate cream. Who does’t love a nice doughnut after a heavy meal? We should did – and now we’re stuffed!

Happy Valentine’s Day to everyone of our fans out there!

Krispie Kreme.JPG