This lasagna has all the essentials – tasty savoury beef mince, creamy bechamel and lots of melted cheese.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 brown onion, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled, finely diced
- 1 celery stick, finely diced
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 150g pancetta (or bacon), diced
- 1 tablespoon freshly chopped herbs (such as thyme, oregano, rosemary)
- 800g lean beef mince
- 200ml red wine
- 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons sun-dried tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 200g bocconcini, cut into little pieces
- 375g packet fresh lasagne sheets
Bechamel cheese sauce
- 1 small onion
- 6 cloves
- 1 bay leaf
- 750ml (3 cups) milk
- 50g unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup plain flour
- 1 1/2 cups grated parmesan
- Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 20cm x 30cm baking dish. Heat oil in a casserole dish over medium heat, add onion, carrot and celery and cook until lightly browned. Add garlic, pancetta and herbs and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring, until the pancetta is crisp.
- Add mince and cook over medium-high heat, stirring, for 5-6 minutes, or until browned. Add the wine and allow to bubble until reduced by half. Add the tomatoes and tomato pastes and stir to combine. Bring to the boil, then cover and place in oven for 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, to make the cheese sauce, stud the onion with the cloves and bay leaf, then place the milk and onion in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and set aside to infuse for 10 minutes. Strain into a jug, discarding the onion. Set aside.
- Place the butter in a clean saucepan and melt over a medium-low heat. Stir in the flour and cook for 2-3 minutes until the mixture begins to bubble (it should look like honeycomb, this prevents the sauce from having a raw flour taste).
- Gradually add the milk, whisking until all the milk is added and the sauce is smooth. Remove from the heat, season well with salt and pepper and stir in half the parmesan until combined. Set aside to cool. Cover to prevent a skin from forming.
- In the baking dish, layer the bolognaise sauce, then the cheese sauce, bocconcini and lasagne. Repeat twice, finishing with a layer of lasagne, then cheese sauce and the remaining parmesan. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes until golden brown and bubbling.
- Remove from oven and set aside for 10 minutes to rest before serving. Lasagna is often better the following day when the flavours have developed. To reheat, cover with foil and heat in an oven preheated to 180°C for 20 minutes or in the microwave as individual portions.