The High Museum and Nearly Vegetarian Lasagna

The High Museum and Nearly Vegetarian Lasagna

I was asked to submit a painting to the High Museum of Art in Atlanta.  Hard to believe, I know. I didn’t realize my artistic talents would be in such demand.  Let me take you on the journey that led to my artistic triumph.

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The story begins when I requested a “car” to pick me up at work at 8:30 (and by “car” I mean “The Big Cheese”).

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Mr. Frank was a careful driver navigating through the heaviest of Atlanta traffic. I called dibs on the front row and with my esteemed position as teacher, I was able to sit there without too much of a struggle.  Score!

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By now you might be a little suspicious of my blog entry title.  But wait, I speak the truth…in a roundabout sort of way.

As soon as you get in the museum, look up.  Even the building is a work of art, I think.

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But there were many more exhibits to see than than the atrium. We walked around with our amazing docents while they explained animals in art.  That was our chosen theme for the visit however,  I was able to take a few photos of other pieces as I walked around.

For example, I named this one… Who Took the Last Brownie?

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And….

Where’s my Beau? Get it?  Look again…(she’s got arrows but no bow or beau in spite of her lack of bra.)

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Crystal condiment stand not to be used at Krystal’s.

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Finally, our tour is nearing its end, however we signed up for the bonus class.  Down into the bowels of the museum we went, single file, with eager anticipation.  Apparently, too eager of anticipation.  But this is where the story gets good because now is when I was asked to paint and display my work at the High.

“Uh, Dr. Murphy, your students are talking over at table three will you sit with them?”

Here is my face at this request…

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Oh man! I was just about to make a break for it and sneak over to the gift shop to buy overpriced replicas of artworks on coasters.  Instead, I joined the table of esteemed fourth grade artists and we painted “Bunches of Snakes.” That was the title and pretty much the extent of the instruction.

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And 30 minutes later after utilizing my french fry container of art supplies, my painting was admired throughout the High Museum of Art!

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After that rigorous day of culture, I needed a quick supper.  Creativity can be exhausting.  I made a really wonderful, fast, and nearly vegetarian lasagna.  We are trying to cut back on meat but we are admittedly not quite there.  I guess we are at the point of lessening the meat and increasing the vegetables.  Before this regime, we would have had an all meat lasagna. Today, we had a 1/2 pound of meat and lots of added vegetable lasagna.  It was very good.  Not as heavy or greasy.  Win Win

I bought these instant lasagna noodles at Earth Fare in Athens,GA thinking they would be a waste because most instant pastas are a gummy mess when cooked.  Not so with these.  I had a perfect lasagna prepared, cooked, and on the table in about 45 minutes.  That is the same time I would still be just cooking the traditional noodles and letting them cool.  I didn’t measure much but I will give approximations.  You can’t really mess this up.

Nearly Vegetarian Lasagna

1/2 pound ground beef cooked with onions and garlic, then rinsed and drained

2 small zucchini, chopped

2 small yellow squash, chopped

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 can diced tomatoes

1 small can tomato sauce

1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

1 teaspoon dried basil

1 small carton ricotta cheese

1 egg

1 tablespoon parsley

1/4  cup (or more)  shaved Parmesan cheese,

2 cups mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Soak 3 sheets of instant lasagna noodles in warm water according to package directions.  Mix drained meat, vegetables, tomatoes, tomato sauce and seasonings in a skillet.  Simmer while you mix the ricotta cheese, egg, parsley, and parmesan cheese together.  Drain the noodles. Place a noodle sheet in the bottom of a greased 9X9 dish.  Layer with one third of meat mixture, 1/3 of ricotta cheese mixture and 1/3 of cheese.  Repeat 2 more layers ending with mozzarella cheese.Bake covered at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until bubbly in center.

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I like to rinse the ground beef before adding the vegetables.DSCF2192

You can eyeball the sauce amount.  You may not need the whole can of tomatoes or sauce.  DSCF2193

This is the meat and vegetables with the ricotta cheese mixture on top.  Repeat.DSCF2198

The noodles look like corrugated roofing but they do get tender without getting gummy.DSCF2201

All done and ready to eat.DSCF2203

It was a quick dinner for a Tuesday night.DSCF2206

 

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3 Responses to The High Museum and Nearly Vegetarian Lasagna

  1. MC February 17, 2015 at 11:55 am #

    The dish looks fabulous….MC

  2. Dorothy February 18, 2015 at 6:27 pm #

    I, JULIE–IT SOUNDS LIKE SOME OF GRANDMA IRENE’S ARTISTIC TALENTS RUBBED OFF ON YOU!!!

  3. Nancy February 19, 2015 at 11:02 am #

    You’re a stitch! Your art was beautiful and your lasagna looked delicious! I’ve often said, “I am Italian by food preference”. You have inspired me to make lasagna, too.

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