Friday, May 11, 2012

Lasagna Cupcakes with Sausage and Mango Chutney

I've decided my favorite punctuation is "..."

If you know me well, you know "..." completely fits my personality.


Because I often trail off in the middle of sentences and stories and move onto something else. Or just stop speaking all together because I'm distracted by something shiny. Or glittery. Glitter is always better.

That dog in Up? Me in dog form. SQUIRREL!

That's probably why I work with children. I get them.

Boy is this a random start to a food post. Stay with me...

Our life is about to take a crazy new road and I'm stoked, scared, and seriously emotional. These two born and bred Texans are scooting 1100 miles away. I would have said boot scooting, since we are Texans, but I've never owned a pair of boots in my life so it just felt wrong.

And of course, when you start to make a move things go wrong... the landline going out
...which caused the DSL to go out
...and the AC unit upstairs went out

Which means there is a 10 day lapse in blog entries. Not due to the AC, but the internet. Duh.

My dad totally saved the day and brought over some fancy internet thingy that runs on cell tower somethings.

That's the technical name of it.

So, my humble little blog will be a bit random for awhile until we get everything settled...

Because right now, "..." is our future. Our crazy, unknown, and incredibly exciting future.

(now I'll finally get to the recipe)

These cuties are from Aarti and have a slight Indian flair that I love. They were fairly quick and easy, very flavorful, and cute as a button. Great for company since they're so much prettier than scooping out lasagna and good for portion control.

We give them two thumbs up!

Lasagna Cupcakes with Sausage and Mango Chutney
Meat Sauce:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 (1-inch) cinnamon stick
4 whole cloves
1 medium onion, finely diced (about 1 cup)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound mild Italian chicken sausage, casing removed
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 (28-ounce can) crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, plus 12 whole small leaves

Ricotta Filling:
3/4 cup part-skim ricotta
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for topping
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella, plus more for topping
1/3 cup mango chutney
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 package wonton wrappers (at least 48)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

For the meat sauce: In a large skillet over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil until it shimmers. Add the cinnamon stick and whole cloves. Add the onion, sprinkle with a little salt and saute until softened but not browned. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute longer.

Add the sausage, breaking up the clumps with your spoon. Cook until the sausage is no longer pink, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook 1 to 2 minutes. Add the crushed tomatoes, 1/4 cup chopped basil, as well as some salt and pepper. Stir to combine and simmer uncovered, for about 15 minutes, stirring every now and then. Allow the meat sauce to cool, about 15 minutes before building lasagna cupcakes. As the meat sauce is cooking, prepare the ricotta filling.

For the ricotta filling: Stir together the ricotta, 3/4 cup Parmesan, 3/4 cup mozzarella and mango chutney. Season with lots of pepper, about a teaspoon and set aside.

To assemble the cupcakes: Pull out your favorite cupcake pan. If your pan is not nonstick, spray the cups with cooking spray. Place a wonton wrapper in each cup. Don't worry if you're using square ones.

Drop about 1 tablespoon of meat sauce into the bottom of each cup. Then add 1 teaspoon of ricotta filling. Then cover with another wonton wrapper, rotating it about 90 degrees so that the corners of the first wrapper and the second wrapper aren't right on top of each other. Repeat this until you've built 3 layers total. Top each with a small basil leaf, then another wonton wrapper. Finish each cupcake with a spoonful of meat sauce, a little shredded mozzarella and pinch of grated Parmesan.

Pop them into the oven and bake for 20 minutes. When time's up, resist the temptation to eat them right away or else you'll burn your mouth! Let them rest on the counter for about 10 minutes, and they should slip out of the muffin tin easily. Top with more shredded basil if you like.

Source: Aarti at Food Network

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