November 14th, 2010

Thanks to our good neighbor Susie, a.k.a. Soozle, and her generations’ deep connections in southern New Hampshire, we have been introduced to both the Rembrandts of plumbing, Luis and Zachary, and the Gauguins of electrics, Wayne and Mike.  Because they have to travel three hours in each direction, ‘tis only fair they get fed well when up here working on this cantankerous old house.

When Luis and Zachary came in November to replace the oil furnace, a morning spent in the dingy and frigid cellar called for a warm and savory brunch of Fontina Egg Puffs and O’Brien Potatoes.  For dinner we grouped around the kitchen table for big bowls of Chili and all the fixings followed by a bag of fresh brownies to take with them on the road.

This weekend Wayne and Mike were modernizing a scary labyrinth of knob and tube, 1950’s romex and a few strands of modern romex, all of which were intertwined and/or simply taped together.  Dinner needed to be hot and filling and supremely satisfying so I devised a lasagna with some added pizza elements.

The usual layers of pasta, cheese custard and marinara with ground beef were joined strategically with layers of smoked ham, capicola and discs of pepperoni, served screaming hot and oozing with cheese.  A huge salad with mushrooms,’ maters and fresh vinaigrette and a jumbo loaf of Italian bread baked with gobs of garlic butter made everyone feel quite electric!

Savory Pizzagna

Related Recipes


You won’t need to use the entire amount of marinara sauce – but it’s better to have too much than not enough.  Warm remaining sauce and pass separately when serving the pizzagna or store in the ‘fridge for another use.

  • Double batch of Marinara with Ground Beef
  • 16 ounces country style cottage cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup finely grated hard provolone or other hard cheese
  • 1 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives (fresh or dried)
  • 1/4 pound Virginia ham, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 pound capicola, thinly sliced
  • 24 slices pepperoni
  • 12 sheets lasagna noodles
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1 pound mozzarella, grated or diced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine eggs, cottage cheese, chives, pepper and grated hard cheese and mix well.  Set aside.

Add olive oil and salt to a large pot of boiling water.  Submerge lasagna noodles and cook according to package directions.  Drain and lay noodles out on a baking sheet until cool enough to handle.

In a 9×13 baking dish, ladle marinara into pan and spread to coat bottom of pan.  Layer remaining ingredients in the following order:

  • 3 lasagna noodles
  • 1/3 cheese-egg mixture
  • Virginia ham
  • ¼ of the mozzarella
  • marinara sauce
  • 3 lasagna noodles
  • 1/3 cheese-egg mixture
  • capicola
  • ¼ of the mozzarella
  • marinara sauce
  • 3 lasagna noodles
  • 1/3 cheese-egg mixture
  • marinara sauce
  • ¼ of the mozzarella
  • 3 lasagna noodles
  • remaining mozzarella
  • pepperoni slices

Cover pan tightly with foil and place on a baking sheet.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Remove foil and bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until lasagna is nicely browned on top and bubbling.  Remove from oven and allow to rest for ten minutes prior to serving.

oes i-� es0� 0�<d fry on both sides until browned.  Subject to the size of the tomatoes, two batches may be required. Return finished tomatoes to the cookie rack and proceed immediately with grilling the burgers.

Place the burgers on the grill rack and cook for 4 to 5 minutes.  Flip and add a generous scoop of the rarebit on top of the cooked side.  Cover and cook an additional 4-5 minutes, or to desired doneness.

To assemble the burgers, place burgers on top of roll bottoms, followed by a fried tomato, a big spoonful of the herb salad and the roll tops.

Copyright © Katherine Stetson, all rights reserved.