*NOTE* – Both of these recipes have had additions/tweaks made to them and the additional info can be found Here!
normally I’ll go full tilt for one meal a day, and Saturday, that meal was Lasagna cupcakes and Make Ahead Potatoes. Neither are all that labor intensive and both taste awesome! I think I’ve stepped up my game a bit because I have friends staying with me from Vancouver and they’ve seen all the pictures I post with what I’ve cooked and now they get to try it, so I don’t want to miss any chances to impress.
They are a cinch to make, and just so everyone felt involved we made an assembly line.
- 2-3 mini muffin tins (can also use regular muffin tins)
- 24-30 Wonton Wrappers
- 1 Onion
- 1 pkg ground meat (we used chicken)
- sauce of your choosing (we used Hunt’s mushroom & basil)
- cheese (we used Daiya Dairy Free Mozzarella)
- seasoning for meat, completely up to you
(To make these vegetarian, simply ditch the ground chicken and supplement veg of your choice. I have made them with zucchini, mushroom, peppers, and onion with excellent results.)
I’ll tell you right off the top, these babies are going in at 375, so turn your oven on when you think you should to be ready to cook. Put some olive oil in a pan and bring it to temperature. Add your ground meat and once it starts to break apart and get a little bit of colour add your onion and seasoning/spices. Cook on a low-medium heat for maximum flavor.
While it’s cooking get one of your houseguests/family/friends AKA prep cooks to put a wonton wrapper in each muffin tin. This is where you have a decision to make, you can either use a glass, cut circles out, and place them in the tins OR you can say screw that, and put in the entire wrapper, which is MUCH more fun!
By the time you’ve decided between circles or squares, your meat has probably finished cooking and now all you have to do is layer in the sauce, meat, and cheese.
Once again, we implemented the assembly line, meat, sauce, cheese, repeat. I will say, we didn’t heat the sauce, it went right from can to tin. It will cook during the 18-20 minutes spent in the oven, but it is your call.
The last decision you have to make for this dish comes between the first and second layer of meat,sauce,cheese, (when using the mini muffin tins) and that is whether you want to fold the corners back in and cover them with the mixture (Thanks to Josh Lyons for the suggestion, its a great one!) or leave them exposed to the elements (see what I did there?).
So these go in, as I said, @ 375 for 18-20 minutes, and come out looking like they do above.
Next on the docket is a little gem called Make Ahead Potatoes, reason being you can make it ahead of time and simply toss it in the oven before your meal. When I got IBS, I also managed to become lactose intolerant, which meant I couldn’t eat this one anymore, which SUCKED. But recently, I’ve found dairy free cream cheese, and sour cream and I was off to the races!
The original recipe is HUGE and feeds roughly all the players in the NFL, so I knocked it down a few pegs.
- 8×8 pan
- 4-5 good sized potatoes, peeled and roughly cut
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 4 oz cream cheese
- 6 tbsp margarine
- 1/2 onion
- 1/2 yellow pepper
- cheese for the top
This will be cooked @ 350 so, once again, preheat accordingly. Fry the onion and yellow pepper in a pan with a bit of olive oil. Boil the the potatoes, drain, and put in a large bowl. Put a little bit of margarine in with them and give them a rough mash, then switch to a hand held mixer, this will make the potatoes extra smooth. Mix in the other ingredients as they appear. Once the veggies have been added, transfer to your 8×8 pan. The potato WILL go above the edge, that’s fine and half the fun. Just smooth out the top and generously apply a layer of cheese and that sucker is ready to go into the oven @ 350 for 40 minutes.
Let it be said that you can add any extras you would like to this dish, I think the next time we do it I’ll add chicken bacon for good measure.
These are the dairy free alternatives I used for this recipe:
Making use of all of these still make it taste great and the three other people who were eating it said that they wouldn’t know that it was made with dairy free anything. This was the end result.
If you want a bit more of a crust, you can leave it in a bit longer, or after the 40 minutes, switch it to broil. But be advised that if you choose the broil method, keep a VERY close eye on it as it can go from crust to crisp without notice.
That brings everyone up to date on the culinary goings on up until yesterday morning, but rather than bog one post down with a boatload of recipes and such. I’d hate for you to get too excited and try and lick/eat your screen.
To close this out, here is my step-kitten, Molly
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