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Artichoke Spinach Lasagna

Reviewed: Oct. 12, 2010
Like every recipe, I considered this a base and since some people said the lasagna was flat and water I made some changes (still gets 5 stars though :D). I normally make "World's Best Lasagna--which is also fantastic, but I wanted a change of pace, so here we go. First, I doubled the onion and garlic and sauteed in olive oil, I didn't have fresh rosemary so I threw in dried rosemary and basil. I added TWO cans of artichokes and TWO packages of thawed, drained frozen spinach and left out the veggie broth but salted to compensate. I used a vodka creme sauce, rinsed the jar, then added another half jar of tomato basil sauce, and finally threw in 8 oz creme cheese. This gives the mixture a gorgeous orange color and thick texture that is tempting to eat as is. For assembly, I used enough of the mixture to cover the bottom and then 4 al dente noodles oriented length wise in the 13x9 pan and half of one perpendicular to the rest at the end for complete coverage. I then added about 1/3 of the ricotta mixture which I doubled and spiced with italian herbs and salt. This was covered with a light layer of shredded mozzarella and then then 1/3-1/2 the spinach artichoke mixture. These layers were repeated and then I topped it with one more layer of noodles and whatever was left plus around 6 ounces of Feta. With the additions and alterations, the lasagna was taller than the 9x13 so I oiled the foil to prevent cheese stick-age. The result is about 10 servings and it reheats wonderfully
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White Chocolate Cheesecake with White Chocolate Brandy Sauce

Reviewed: Oct. 12, 2010
This is the best cheesecake I've made if not the best I've ever had. Like others have said, it will be raved about. That said, since the first time making I followed some of the recommendations to double the white chocolate and reduce the sugar (1/2 cup is fine). I will add that though you can get away with white chocolate chips, it is neither as good nor can it be effectively melted like real white chocolate with cocoa butter. I do a standard graham cracker crust, and other than the white chocolate sugar change, the ingredients are all the same. I also have a crappy springform pan so I generally put several containers (i.e. 8x8 or 13x9 pyrex) of water in the bottom of the oven and leave the cheesecake in the oven to cool to reduce incidence of cracking. Worst case, it cracks and you can cover it up by refrigerating the brandy sauce to thicken it and pour it over the top.
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