As Christmas is drawing near, I can’t help but think about the things that make this season so special and beloved. Among precious family, friends and not to mention presents, all of my memories are laced with the smells of my grandmas cooking. The smell of great food is always music to my nose, but food made well and made from the heart seem to find a way to engrain a way into your memories. Upon stumbling on Tyler Florences Dinner at My Place cookbook, I flipped open to a recipe that made the price of the cookbook irrelevant (even though it was only 20 dollars). The lasagna seemed to jump of the page, into my mouth and scream ” I AM THE BEST THING YOU WILL EVER EAT!”, naturally I agreed with the lasagna and bought the book.

Now, let’s get real. I LOVE to cook. LOVE TO COOK! Some of the steps may be a little more advanced, but not too bad! You CAN make this. You HAVE TO make this! I regret not taking good photos the whole way through but I did take one at the end! Heres the recipe. I dare you to try it and promise you wont regret it.

  • 1 recipe fresh pasta dough (see page 27 of Dinner at My Place) (or use up your pantry packaged lasagna noodles like I did : )

Bolognese:

  • 2 carrots, cut into large pieces
  • 1 large onion, cut into large pieces
  • 3 ribs celery, cut into large pieces
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 4 fresh sage sprigs, leaves only
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound ground beef (I used black angus, we prefer this much more)
  • 1 pound ground pork (I couldn’t locate ground pork so I used spicy Italian sausage)
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 750-milliliter bottle dry red wine (I only had 1/2 bottle left and used only 1/2) (Don’t worry DBU people. We made it at my parents house :))
  • 1-28 ounce can San Marzano whole tomatoes (I usually use Red Gold brand)
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (I didn’t add this, I was afraid my husband wouldn’t like it)
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley

Bechamel:

  • 2 cups whole milk (I used 2%, I don’t usually have whole)
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound buffalo mozzarella, torn into pieces
  • 1/4 grated Parmesan
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley

Begin by making the Fresh Pasta Dough or by soaking your packaged noodles in a bowl of hot water, turning so they can soften.

To make bolognese, put carrot, onion, clelery, garlic and sage in a food processor and process until you have smooth vegetable pulp. coat a large, heavy-based pot with oil and set over mediium heat. Add vegetable pulp and saute until fragrant and some of the moisture has evaporated, 4-5 minutes. Push the vegetable pulp to one side of the pot. Season ground beef and pork with plenty of salt and pepper, then add to the pot. Stir and break up the meat until it is brown, then dust with the 2 tbsp. of flour before adding wine, tomatoes, milk, and cinnamon. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer about 1-1/2 hours, uncovered, until sauce is thick. Add parmesan and parsley and season with salt and pepper. Set aside while you prepare the Bechamel.

To make the Bechamel, set a large saucepan over medium heat. Add milk, garlic, and a bay leaf and bring to a simmer to infuse milk with herb flavors. Set a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add butter and melt, then sprinkle in flour while you stir with a wooden spoon. Once all of the flour has been combined with the butter, grab a whisk and gradually pour in the herb-infused milk, passing it through a sieve as you go to strain out the aromatics. As the sauce thickens, continue to whisk over low heat, then add nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper and set aside to cool slightly.

Preheat oven to 350F. To assemble the lasagna, cut the hang-dried pasta sheets to fit a 9x13x3″ lasagna pan; set the pasta aside. Coat the bottom of the lasagna pan with a thin layer of Bechamel. Top with a layer of lasagna noodles, trimming noodles to fit as necessary. Top the noodle layer with a layer each of Bechamel, Bolognese, and mozzarella pieces. Continue with the layers of lasagna noodles, Bechamel, Bolognese, and mozzarella pieces until you have three complete layers, finishing with mozzarella. Shower the top of the lasagna with Parmesan and parsley. Bake, uncovered, on a trap (to catch the drippings) in the center of the preheated oven for 1 hour. (If the top starts to brown, tent with foil). Let the lasagna stand for 15-20 minutes before cutting.

YUMMY!!!

By the way…be on the look out for recipes for some incredible pot roast tacos (changed my life) and some of the best carrot cake of all time! Consider them my Christmas present to you and yours! Along with a wedding and some other goodies on the way this week!

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  • Gale Wilson - It was truly one of the best meals, I have ever tasted! It was certainly worth the wait! Thankful Jenn and Michael have the patience and courage to step out and do this! Did I say excellent?ReplyCancel

Every once in a while you find friends who leave you wondering how blessed you are. Austin and Hannah are those people. I have the great honor of leading worship with Austin every week ( wait and see…he’s the next Phil Wickham..but better), and along with him comes the sweetest, most genuine person I know, Hannah.

Shame on me for taking over a month to post two pictures. I know! And I also know what you’re thinking, “TWO PICTURES?!” And my response is…yes. just two. Just two because I wanted enough to help me remember this wedding. But even more than this, I wanted to remember it through my eyes and not my view finder. I’m sure you understand. 🙂

Austin and Hannah, this day was perfect. Every detail was a photographers dream! I’m surprised I contained myself. Your love for each other is so beautiful and I am incredibly blessed to call you guys my sweet friends. I love you guys and can’t wait to see where the Lord decides to take your journey, and our journeys together.

Here are the two moments I just couldn’t miss. And seriously you guys…why are you so good looking?

Check out Shull Photography and Meshali Mitchell Photography for more photos…and for one the most beautiful wedding videos EVER check out Jonathon Link Studios! (props to our friend Alyster for writing the song on this video! Han walked down the aisle to it!)

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I love this family! We had SO MUCH FUN during this shoot! They are just too precious! Can’t wait to share the rest!

Krissy and Kyle…I just adore you! These two love birds are absolutely wonderful! We shared an afternoon of adventures that i absolutely can’t wait to share with you!!

Meet Kari and Evan! These two are so wonderful! I can’t wait to tell you all about how much fun we had on our shoot! But lets just say…we met someone famous. and awesome while we were out.

And…Do you remember the time I introduced you to two of my best friends? Or the time I took fake engagement pictures? Well! Here they are! And here’s the beginning of the real engagements!

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You remember Katie and Tanner right? Of course you do! They’re only one of the cutest couples of all time! Ali and I got to go down to Houston a few Saturdays ago to shoot their GORGEOUS wedding. Seriously. STUNNING! Here’s a little sneak peek!

Meet Erin and Jonathan. Two of the smartest people I’ve ever met. These two are SO MUCH FUN! We had such a good time on their engagement shoot! Can’t wait to share the rest with you!

And last but not least…meet Lindsey and Garrett! Lindsey and I know each other from my random year of being an Oklahoma citizen and I can’t tell you how fun it was to catch up! These two are incredible! We had such a fun time!!

HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE! I am so excited to have a break from the real world!!! Wonderful!!!

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It was the summer before my sophomore year of college. Life had brought many circumstances along my way, one of them being the need for a room mate to fill out our 6 person town home. After tireless searching, I’ll never forget the Facebook conversations that would lead to an incredible room mate, and before I knew it, a best friend. Little did I know, this blessing of friendship with Lauren would also lead to an incredible group of friends whom I love and will never take for granted.

Brittany, our oh so enchanting bride, is Lauren’s twin sister. You would never guess that they are twins, the only features they have in common is that all of their features are flawless. One could never mistake that they are sisters though, these two share a bond that nothing could shake. Brittany is the loving one. She was born a mom, who has others interests at heart at all time, and does not know how to be anything but an example of unconditional love. She knows exactly how to love the people around her, and we all miss her when she’s not at one of our little friend gatherings. Its like an incomplete puzzle when she’s missing…she can’t help it that she is such a big piece. I knew the moment I met “Bert” that the man she would marry would top them all. I also knew that she would be an absolutely breath taking bride. I was right. About both.

Shaun is a piece of work. I have never met someone with so much confidence in my life. I have also never met someone who balances their integrity so well with their confidence. I had heard stories about him throughout my freshman and sophomore year, but had no idea what I had coming. Shaun’s personality is one of those that your favorite movie is based off of. He is one of those guys who leaves you voicemails in funny voices just because it will brighten your day. I knew he and Brittany were made for each other when Shaun decided to woo her while she was in Japan on Valentines day. He wrote a rap and made a music video just for Bert. His “V-day felt like D-day without her”, and we were all smitten, waiting for Bert to come home so he could propose and we could all get to wedding planning! Luckily, we wouldn’t have to wait too long…

Berts dress was INCREDIBLE. It was a two piece gown, the skirted part was detachable for the transition from ceremony to reception. How awesome is that?! Heres the cute little dress that hides underneath the skirt!

In classic Lo and Bert form, they primped each other for the big day. Such sweet moments between these two beautiful sisters.

Their gorgeous mom,”Mo”, as we affectionately call her, jumped in on the action and Lo did her hair.

Shaun tried to fool us with his “I’m not nervous attitude” but we all saw right through it. I’ve never seen him so excited.

I told you I was right. Isn’t she absolutely stunning?

Sometimes moments catch you off guard. This moment gets me every time. Ill never forget when “Po” came through that door to see Brittany for the first time.

Both Shaun and Brittany’s dads were outside during our time with the guys…so naturally, I HAD to thrown them in for a picture. I mean…come on.

The ceremony began..and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house. Look for yourself.

Let the good times begin! Bert and Shaun had an incredible band! Cuvee was AWESOME!

Somehow, Journey always brings out the best in people…

I love you guys!!! I am just so blessed to be a part of your lives…I can’t wait to see the journey the Lord has laid out for you!

Family and friends! To see the whole wedding and maybe even grab a couple prints for your fridge check them out by clicking here!

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