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It seems like instead of a housewarming party, we have friends and family over two at a time. Not intentionally, it just kinda happened. I suppose it’s also a good thing because I only have a set of 4 plates.

We had all those weekends of guests from out of town, and now we are starting to have local friends over. This past weekend one of my besties from college, LN, and her bf came over for dinner. I don’t know if it’s a sign of  maturity? nah. Or growing up?maybe, getting old… but in the almost 9 years we’ve been bffs, I think it’s the most grown up thing we have ever done together.

Sure we’ve cooked together many times (in dorm room microwaves or apartments). But for the first time in our lives we are both in a relationship, have real jobs, and no school whatsoever. Maybe that’s what makes life seem a little different all of a sudden. I don’t think it has changed our friendship, but it has definitely evolved. I still think I can tell her anything without judgement, and she’s the first person I call for trying something new or spontaneous. Want to go to Disney World for the weekend? Yes! Want to go try some weird ethnic food that will probably make me sick? Sure! Want to make a 3 hour lasagna? Yummy!

Well it didn’t really take 3 hours, it just needs time because you make your own tomato sauce and it takes time to simmer. It was worth it though, came out basil-y and delicious!

If it wasn’t for LN, I would have never known to lay out the pasta, so it doesn’t stick. I would have probably ended up with a whole mess of sticky pasta if I had tried to do this myself…

Note:No one like a crunch noodle.” ~LN

We unfortunately got a crunchy noodle top. But I then learned that the crunch noodle can be avoided by covering the lasagna with plastic wrap before covering it with aluminum foil to bake. Must try that next time.

Homemade Lasagna

via: allrecipes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage
  • 3/4 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup minced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
  • 2 (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 12 lasagna noodles
  • 16 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced or shredded
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. In a deep skillet, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with basil, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  4. To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Serve with salad:

It’s fun being able to have friends over at your own place. It’s a nice change from spending obsene amounts of money always going out. It’s nice to know we can do both.

There are so many different types of friendships. Why do some friends just disappear, and other stay in your life for good? (like LN, you’re stuck with me) I have friends that even if I don’t talk to them for a few months or a year, I know that when I see them we can easily reconnect and start back up where we left off. Sometimes even without trying old friends randomly appear in the most unexpected places (like airports). Is that fate?

Of course, social media makes keeping old friends easier. But not always, just the other day an old friend’s name randomly popped in my head. A name that I hadn’t thought of in forever (read: early 90s). She was one of my best friends in elementry school, waaaay before the facebook era. I decided to look stalk around facebook and see if I could find her. There were 27 results of people with her name, none of which I could point out as the girl I last saw when we were 12. Surely 98% of the population has facebook by now, right? Though, I sure hope she wouldn’t recognize me now based on how I looked in 6th grade… but for some reason I hoped I could recognize her. How crazy would that be? Or creepy stalkerish, I suppose…

Do you have any friends that have fallen out of your life? Were you able to rediscover them through social media? Have you had a friend unexpectedly come back into your life in the most random way?

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