Friday, May 4, 2012

The Laird and His Lady Veggie Lasagna

Last night our sweet newlywed friends,Eileen and William came over for the evening and it was so fun! William is from England, near Cotswold and Eileen met him in Scotland while both were working with YWAM (Youth With A Mission). We have known and loved Eileen for many years as she has been friends with our daughter, Jessi, through high school, college and after. She spent many days and nights in our home and we love her like a daughter.
They are here on "holiday" after being married at the end of March in England.They are spending time with her family stateside for a bit.

These are the gorgeous roses they brought to us!

I asked what type of food they enjoyed and Eileen said they both were getting more into vegetarian.
So I, of course turned to my son-in-law, Matt, who is a vegetarian, and our daughter, Erin, for new ideas on some vegetarian recipes.
Erin had just made a new one the night before last and it sounded wonderful so I went with it.
She gave me a very loose recipe and the ingredients she chose and then I came up with some additions and VOILA:

Vegetarian Polenta Eggplant Lasagna

Preheat oven to 375*

1 or 2 rolls of Trader Joe's Organic Polenta
1 jar of Organic Basil Marinara Sauce
Approx 1/2 jar of TJ's Pesto Sauce
1 bag of frozen fire roasted peppers and onions (thawed ahead of time a bit)
1-2 cloves fresh garlic finely chopped
3-4 baby bella mushrooms sliced
1 small or 1/2 large eggplant med sliced
2 cups finely shredded mozzarella cheese

Slice one package of the polenta 1/2 in. thick.
Layer as much as will fit into the bottom of a class baking dish. I used a 9 x 12" dish.
Layer 1/2 of the marinara sauce on top of the polenta.
Mix the chopped garlic with the thawed veggies and layer that over the sauce.
Layer 1/2 the shredded cheese.
Layer the mushrooms.
Drop pesto sauce by little spoonfuls on and around mushrooms.
Layer the sliced eggplant.
Top with one more layer of polenta slices 
Cover with the remainder of the marinara sauce.

Bake at 375 for 25 minutes
Top with remaining shredded cheese and bake an additional 15 minutes.
Let stand a bit to give the juices time to settle and be somewhat absorbed.Can be a little liquidy because of the frozen veggies, but the longer it sets the less liquid there is.

There's really no wrong way to make this or layer it or what you choose to put in it and it was so yummy...and today we get to be excited about leftovers for dinner!!!!
So, I've dubbed my version of my sweet, pregnant daughter's recipe "The Laird and His Lady Lasagna" in honor of our friends William and Eileen.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


Why is it that waiting is so hard?
I'm sure it has something to do with our need to be in control and independent.

I was thinking a lot about this because our family is waiting for the imminent birth of our daughter Erin's baby. We are at the "any moment" time and yet it could be a while.
She's due May 3rd.

Everything I am planning for this week and the next all are prefaced with, "If the baby doesn't come" statements.

God asks us to live fully in the present and we have a very difficult time with that command.

What's so funny about that is that we are not capable of living in anywhere BUT the present. Yet, we act and plan as though we are certain that the next moment, day, week, month, or even year is ours to fill in the blanks.

Obviously, we have to make plans and have some structure to our future, but it's in the subtle attitude that it will play out just as we expect it to that we see how bound and determined we are to get our way.

I have been learning, through sometimes painful ways, to place all my expectations in God and in nothing and nobody else.
He always knows what is coming and what is most glorifying to Him and best for me, His child...I don't...I'm too small-minded and earthly bound.

I also recall our first pastor's wife once talking about a word study she did on "waiting" on God. She mentioned this:
In a restaurant the word "server" and "waiter" are fairly interchangeable. There's a hint: The way we serve God is to wait on Him...actively wait on Him. We wait until we know what He wants (dare I say needs?) from us and then we serve in that way. Sometimes he just wants us to be there with Him and fully available, but not doing anything that feels productive to us. It just makes Him happy to know we are there...waiting.

I still remember after my dad died the long hours of standing and talking with people at the funeral parlor at the visitation. I was exhausted, sad, and felt like nobody really understood what it was to lose my daddy. I was a "daddy's girl"! 
At some point in those hours I realized that every time I glanced across the room there was my girlfriend Bobbi, just hanging out and she would look over at me and smile softly and nod.
She was just there, but her presence and the fact that when I needed anything I knew could make eye contact with her and let her know with a glance, meant the world to me and eased my heart in those hours.

Maybe it's a little like that with God. He tells us not to fret and we look all over the room, but not at Him. He tells us "just wait on Me" and and we run about making endless plans and stressing out. We could either take the role of Bobbi and be available to God trusting Him to let us know when we should act, "actively waiting"; Or we could even take the role of me and know that He is in the room, in our lives waiting, always there and available, and just make eye contact with Him.

Either scenario, either way, waiting is really only hard when we don't trust Who it is we're waiting on...and He has proven himself over and over again in my life. So. I expectations are in You alone least for this moment...for right now!