Everyone has their own favorite lasagna recipe, I prefer to make it the classic way, I remember the very first time I made lasagna was in my school’s cookery classes in Bangor (U.K), I remember my father had to go look for a halal meat shop to purchase minced meat for me, back in 1996 it was very hard to find a halal meat shop in Bangor. Hope you’ll enjoy making it and eating it as much as I do....
2 tbsp oil
30 gm butter
1 large onion chopped
2-3 garlic cloves (crushed/or use paste)
500 gm minced beef
8-10 tomatoes (pureed)
2-3 tbsp tomato puree
1 cup water
Salt & pepper to taste
1 tbsp sugar
1/ 2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp Italian seasoning
½ tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp crushed fennel seeds
12 lasagna sheets
Grated cheddar and mozzarella cheese (1 cup each)
For white sauce:
60 gm butter
1/3 cup plain flour
3 cups milk
Salt & pepper to taste (keeping in mind the amount of salt and pepper added in mince sauce)
¼ tsp nutmeg powder
1) Heat oil and butter in a heavy based pan, add in the onions and garlic and cook until softened, Increase the heat, add in the mince and brown well, breaking up any lumps with a fork.
2) Add in the tomatoes puree, water, salt, pepper, sugar, fennel seeds and the herbs. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 40-45 minutes.
3) Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water.
4) To make white sauce, melt the butter in a medium pan over low heat until foaming, add in the flour, and cook for 2 minutes stirring constantly. Take the pan off the heat and gradually stir in the milk, return to heat and bring to a boil until thickened, when thick simmer for 2 minutes, season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
5) Preheat oven to 180 C (350F/gas 4), butter a ovenproof dish well, spread a thin layer of the meat sauce over the base and top it with a thin layer of white sauce, if the sauce becomes thick, warm it gently to make spreading easier. Lay the lasagna sheets on top, gently pressing to push out the air.
6) Continue the layers, finishing with white sauce, sprinkle the cheese on top and bake for 35-40 minutes or until slightly brown, set aside 15 minutes before cutting.