Lasagna

Servings : Serves 4-6

A classic luxurious and hearty Lasagna, packed with meat sauce, white sauce and lots of cheese! 

Ingredients for Meat Sauce

  • 500 gm beef mince (you can use chicken or lamb mince if you like)
  • 4 onions, chopped
  • 1 tsp ginger paste
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 8 fresh tomatoes, blended until smooth
  • 4 tbsp tomato paste/puree
  • 2 tbsp tomato sauce/ketchup
  • 1 green or red capsicum, chopped
  • 2-3 sausages, fried and chopped (optional, you can leave this out)
  • 2-3 green chillies chopped
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • salt to taste
  • black pepper to taste
  • chopped coriander
  • oregano (optional)
  • 4 tbsp oil
  • chopped veggies like beans, peas, carrots, sweet corn (optional, or you can use any that you like and leave the rest out)

Ingredients for White Sauce

  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 4 cups milk
  • salt to taste
  • white pepper powder to taste (you can also use black pepper)

Other Ingredients

  • 12 lasagna sheets (approximately)
  • 2-3 cups grated mozzarella and cheddar cheese
  • oregano (optional)
  • chopped coriander (optional)

Instructions

First, prepare the Meat Sauce

Heat oil, then add the onions and fry until soft and translucent. Add the ginger and garlic pastes, and when they release their aroma, add the mince and sprinkle some black pepper over it and fry whilst breaking the bits of mince so that there are no lumps until the mince changes colour to brown.

Now add the capsicum, green chillies and veggies, and sprinkle the spices of your choice (I normally add a pinch of turmeric and a tsp. of cumin powder) fry them with the mince for a few minutes, then add the chopped sausages if you're using them, tomato paste and blended tomatoes. Cook on low heat, whilst covered, until the sauce thickens, and the mince is ready then add the ketchup, sugar and adjust salt and chilli. Sprinkle some oregano if you have it, or a bit of garam masala, squeeze the lemon juice in and sprinkle some chopped coriander, then turn off the heat. This sauce should not be dry, it should be saucy.

Next, prepare the White Sauce

Melt butter in a saucepan, stir in plain flour, then cook on low heat for 5 minutes. Cooking the flour in the butter helps reduce the 'raw' smell of the flour so don't skip this step! Slowly whisk in milk, if you pour the milk in too quickly you will form lumps, so add gradually whilst whisking briskly to get rid of any lumps and form a smooth roux/mixture. Then bring to the boil, whilst stirring. Turn down heat, then cook until the sauce starts to thicken and coats the back of a wooden spoon.

Prepare your lasagna sheets, about 12 should be enough. Check if they need to be boiled first, or if they can be used as is. It is normally indicated on the carton. If they need to be boiled, follow the instructions on the pack and proceed to boil them for the time specified. Keep some shredded mozzarella and cheddar cheese ready, my favorite combination!

Finally, assemble the dish

Grease a baking dish with some butter, then add a bit of white sauce (to prevent your lasagna from sticking to the dish), followed by some lasagna sheets. Try to avoid overlapping, you can break the lasagna sheets to fit your dish. Now pour some meat sauce, followed by white sauce and some cheese. Again add a layer of lasagna sheets, again the meat sauce and once more cover with the white sauce. You can add a third layer if your dish is deep enough. Make sure the final layer is covered with white sauce and you can sprinkle some cheese on top, and some chopped coriander and oregano if you like.

Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180 C for about 40 minutes. If the top is browning too quickly, then cover it with some foil and continue baking. Once ready, remove and let it sit for about 10-15 minutes before cutting into the lasagna. This will ensure that your cuts will be neat and tidy.

Enjoy your yummy lasagna!! 🙂

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