I am completely mad about Southern Living. Always have been and I think I always will be. Why? Because, I am not the best cook in the world, and any menu I have ever served from the magazine or a Southern Living Cookbook has been a hit. My family “praises me in the city gates” and guests usually ask for the recipe when I serve a recipe from SL.
I also love the AMC series, Mad Men which has also been praised in the city gates. They’ve been nominated for numerous Golden Globes, won a few, and also won a few Emmys. I was hooked on the very first pilot and crushed when they had all the contractual issues that interrupted the series. I can hardly deal with the series finale coming up in 2015.
So tonight, I’m sharing a menu from the October 2013 issue of Southern Living that will join the North and South once again. Fortunately, there should not be a war involved this time. A simple, southern recipe to enjoy a complex television show set in Manhattan.
Salad with Lite Creamy Caesar Dressing, and
for Dessert – Pound Cake with Blackberries
- 10 uncooked lasagna noodles
- 1 cup finely chopped sweet onion
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced and divided
- 1 (24-oz.) jar tomato-and-basil pasta sauce
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
- 1 cup low-fat ricotta cheese
- 2 ounces 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
- 1 (14-oz.) can baby artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
- 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
- 1/4 cup torn fresh basil
- 1/4 cup (1 oz.) freshly shredded Parmesan cheese
- Toppings: fresh basil, Parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 350°. Cook pasta according to package directions for al dente. Drain pasta (do not rinse); arrange in a single layer on a piece of lightly greased aluminum foil or wax paper.
- Sauté onion in hot oil in a 3-qt. saucepan over medium heat 7 to 8 minutes or until caramelized. Add two-thirds of minced garlic, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Stir in tomato sauce and next 2 ingredients. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring often. Reduce heat to low; simmer, stirring often, 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Stir together ricotta and cream cheese until smooth. Stir in artichoke hearts, next 3 ingredients, and remaining minced garlic. Spread 1/4 cup cheese mixture on 1 noodle. Roll up firmly, and place, seam side down, into a lightly greased 11- x 7-inch baking dish. Repeat with remaining noodles and cheese. Spoon tomato sauce over lasagna rolls.
- Bake, covered, at 350° for 45 to 50 minutes or until thoroughly heated and bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes. Sprinkle with desired toppings.
We aren’t fancy people, so occasionally we’ve been known to have dinner on a TV tray. This is exactly how our plates look – no formal cloth napkins or crystal water goblets, just good food on a blue plate. What you can’t see is my face, as I am mesmerized by the 60’s styles, Don Draper’s darkness and the rise of both women and blacks in this era that is dominantly “mad about men.”
I had a sliver of pound cake topped with fresh blackberries in lieu of Don’s Old Fashion. It is another contrast between darkness and light in the show, but a tad bit sweeter.
All the drama of Mad Men called for a bit of leverage with a simple meal to enjoy with the “dark knight,” Don Draper. What do you suggest for the grand finale? I will need comfort food. Thank goodness, Southern Living will still be around.