Two weeks ago, my friend A. and I were all set to go see Ina Garten (of Barefoot Contessa fame) speak in Boston. I had bought the tickets over the summer, and they were paper tickets (which is not the norm these days). A day or two before, I was searching my computer for saved PDF ticket files, and that’s when I remembered they were paper. The problem was, I couldn’t find them. True (and awful) story. By the time I realized that the tickets were not going to materialize, I also learned that the event was sold out. UGH!
Now why am I sharing this story? Because I offer it as Exhibit A as to how my day-to-day has gotten super busy–so much so, that I am having trouble keeping track of things. Even some important things–like dinner! (I may have eaten popcorn for mine last night.) That said, even though I may have missed seeing Ina Garten in person, I *did* get a copy of her new cookbook, Make It Ahead, and I am loving it so far.
This week, I used her recipe for Patitsio and made two batches–one of which I will freeze. It is easy to make, though a bit time consuming, but it can be done in stages if needed. One tip: though each batch calls for a 28-oz can of tomatoes, I would recommend adding an extra 14 oz. to each batch to give it a bit more tomato flavor and to add some additional moisture. Also, if you are not a fan of lamb, you can certainly double up on the ground beef instead.
The book has lots of great recipes that you can prepare in advance of a dinner party or family celebration–or even just a regular old workweek when you have lots of obligations and need to have some hearty meals at the ready.