November 29, 2009


Back in Pune, I would go shopping at the supermarkets, and among the pastas in all shapes and colors, the lasagna sheets would tempt me. But, staying in a hostel, without a proper place to cook, I had to resist my temptation. Soon after I came here in Slovenia, my craving for lasagna resumed. And finally I got this nice recipe of classic meat lasagna. I love the tangy taste of the meat sauce, and the white sauce making it more creamy and juicy. As it gets baked in the oven, the meaty cheesy aroma entices the senses; and the molten cheese on top and the golden brown crispy edges makes it completely irresistible.
The interesting thing about lasagna is that it can be frozen easily. So one can make double the amount of meat sauce at once and freeze half of it for later or even use it as a pasta sauce. And the possibilities of using various kinds of sauces other than the classic meat one, makes it interesting to cook.


2 packs of Lasagna sheets
Grated cheese (Parmesan, Gauda, and any other light cheese) – according to taste (I love it cheesy and generally mix two kinds)
Classic Meat sauce:
500g minced meat
500g tomato puree
1 small carrot or any other root (like celery)
1 small onion
Bay leaf
White sauce:
50g butter
50g flour
1/2lit milk (or more according to consistency preferred)


Classic meat sauce:
1. Grate the carrot or any other root you are using, and finely chop the onion.
2. In a pot, heat oil. When hot, add onion and sauté until transparent. Add the bay leaves.
3. Now add the minced meat and grated carrot and mix well. The meat will leave water, cook until the water dries.
4. When it is dry, add the tomato puree and cook covered for 45 min on low heat.
5. Now the meat sauce is ready. One can prepare this the previous day, also prepare in excess quantity and freeze for later use.

White sauce:
6. In a pan, add the butter.
7. When it melts, add the flour and mix well.
8. As it starts frothing, start adding the milk slowly while stirring continuously. Care should be taken such that no lumps are formed (maybe use a hand egg beater).
9. When it starts boiling, add ground pepper, nutmeg and salt. Cook for 5-10 more minutes until a creamy viscous consistency is reached.
10. Now before making the layers, set the oven at 200°C.

11. Prepare the lasagna sheets according to the instructions on the packet. I used lasagna that needs no precooking.
12. Line a baking tray with a baking sheet, and start making the layers.
13. Make a layer of lasagna sheets. Cover it with a layer of meat. It is not necessary to make a complete thick layer of meat; just make sure to brush every corner of the lasagna sheets with the meat gravy to make it juicy. Now spread one layer of white sauce.
14. Repeat this five times, i.e. five layers of each. Now cover with another layer of lasagna sheets and generously spread grated cheese on top.
15. Bake it for 20mins (both sides) at 200°C, the cheese will melt and edges will become nice crunchy. Then turn off the oven, but leave the lasagna inside for 10 more minutes, allowing it to settle down.

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