Easy Homemade Lasagna

For all you Garfield fans here is a recipe you would love. It’s also my son Arjun’s favourite Italian dish. So let me get to it. I have used the dried lasagna sheets instead of the frozen one which are an alternative. The sheets are probably the trickiest part of the dish and following the instructions carefully will give you the best chance of getting it right the first time. Typically the lasagna can be cooked with a variety of meat i.e. beef, chicken or lamb. I have used chicken which is common for Indians. For vegetarians the ideal vegetable option for the lasagna is spinach. While this is a popular and common recipe, here are a couple of tips which worked for me. It’s a good idea to cover the dish with foil paper while baking to help retain the moisture. Take off the foil right at the end and bake without it for the last five minutes to get an even brown layer on the cheese topping. After baking, remove the lasagna tray from the oven and let it sit for fifteen minutes. This helps to keep the lasagna content together and help it retain it’s layered shape while cutting. Needless to say, the lasagna is quite a heavy meal by itself ideal for entertaining guests or a weekend family lunch or dinner. Garlic bread or dinner rolls go well with the lasagna. If you are enjoying a romantic dinner, don’t leave out the wine. Happy Fooding Around!

 

 

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Lasagna

  • Author: Reetika Mitra
  • Prep Time: 25 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Total Time: 1 Hr 10 mins

Description

Ala Garfeild


Scale

Ingredients

Ingredients :

  • 12 Lasagane Sheets
  • 1 Tbsp Oil
  • 500 gms Ground (minced) Chicken (You also use Lamb, pork or even beef meat if you like)
  • 1 large Onion, diced medium
  • 34 cloves Garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup Red Wine (Optional)

OR

  • 1/3rd cup Chicken Stock or Broth
  • 3 cups Marinara Sauce (you can substitute it with a Pasta Sauce if not readily available)
  • ¼ Tsp freshly ground Black Pepper
  • ¼ Tsp dried Thyme
  • ½ Tsp sugar
  • 2 Tbsp of chopped Parsley
  • 3 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • Salt according to taste

Ingredients for the Cheese Sauce :

  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • 3 Tbsp Flour
  • 5 cups of full fat Milk
  • Pinch of White Pepper powder
  • ½ cup grated Cheddar Cheese
  • ½ cup shredded Parmesan Cheese

Instructions

  1. To ready your Lasagne sheets, place them in a pot of salted boiling water and cook as per package instructions until they are firm to the bite. Do not over- cook them as they will soften up while they bake in the oven later on.
  2. Drain the noodles and wash them under cold water to stop them from getting cooked further and also to stop them from sticking together. You may sprinkle a tbsp of oil to make sure the pasta sheets do not stick to one another.
  3. To make the meat sauce, heat a deep bottom pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 Tbsp of olive oil or any other vegetable oil. Add 500 gms ground chicken (or lamb meat). Throw in 1 large diced Onion. Stir and saute for 5 mins or until the meat changes colour and is no longer pink.
  4. Add the grated or minced garlic and cook for another 1 – 2 mins or until fragrant. Next add ¼ cup of red wine OR 1/3rd cup chicken stock (which ever of the two you are using) and saute until mostly evaporated.
  5. Now add 3 cups of your favourite Marinara Sauce (or pasta sauce), whether homemade or store -bought.
  6. Add ¼ tsp ground black pepper, ¼ tsp dried thyme, ½ Tsp sugar, 2 tbsp chopped parsley and salt according to taste. Bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for about 5 mins on low heat.
  7. In the meanwhile prepare your cheese sauce. Melt 2 tbsp butter in a saucepan. Add 3 tbsp flour and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add 2.5 cups full fat milk a small amount at a time, whisking smooth after each addition. Add the white pepper powder and continue to cook over medium heat. Keep stirring continuously until slightly thick. Remove from heat, and add ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese and ¼ cup shredded parmesan   Stir until melted.

To Assemble  :

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 375° F or 190 °C.
  2. In a deep 9”X 13” ovenproof casserole start assembling your lasagna. First spread ½ cup of the meat sauce over the bottom. Cover with one layer of the lasagna sheets.
  3. Next add 1/3rd of the remaining meat sauce over the lasagna sheets and sprinkle the top with ½  of the cheese sauce, spread it evenly and top it with 1 cup of the shredded mozzarella cheese.
  4. Repeat the process till you have three layers of pastas. End with the cheese on top as the cheese helps to form a wonderful crust.
  5. Cover the ovenproof casserole with a large sheet of foil. Loosely over the foil from top and seal the sides.
  6. Bake at 375 F for 40 mins. Then remove the foil and then broil it (over high heat) for 3 – 5 mins or until the cheese is golden brown.
  7. Take out from the oven and garnish with some fresh parsley on top.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 4

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