Easy Lasagna

February 16, 2019
Lasagna is the perfect comfort dish that is very easy to make for a weekend dinner or family gathering. This is a simple lasagna that I make often with crushed tomatoes, italian seasonings, minced beef, then layered with noodles, cheese and Bechamel sauce. Make this meaty, cheesy, crowd-pleasing simple Lasagna Recipe tonight. 



(serves 4)

Ingredients

For the meat sauce

500g minced beef/ chicken (ground beef/chicken) 
4 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh garlic 
1 large onion (finely chopped)
3 large tomatoes (blended)
1 small carrot (finely grated)
2 tbsp tomato paste/puree
2 dried bay leaves
2 tsp dried Oregano 
2 tbsp dried Parsely 
2 bay leaves
1 cup water 
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp fennel seeds powder 
1/4 cup chopped fresh Parsely leaves (optional)
1/4 cup chopped fresh Basil leaves (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste




Directions


  1. Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium high heat. Add onion and then add the chopped garlic and saute for few minutes. 
  2. Turn the heat to high and add the minced beef/chicken. Cook, breaking it up finely for about 5 minutes. 
  3. Bring the heat to medium and add the blended tomatoes and tomato paste, stir well and cook for few minutes. 
  4. Now add the water and mix well. To this add the grated carrots, bay leaves, dried oregano, dried & fresh parsley and fresh basil leaves, stirring constantly. 
  5. Cook for 20 minutes closed and then open the lid and let it simmer for 10 minutes. Stir occasionally, scraping the bottom of the pan.
  6. Once the meat sauce is thicken, add salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving dish. 

Ingredients


For the Bechamel sauce

3 cups whole milk (750 ml)

5 tbsp butter (73g)
5 tbsp all-purpose flour (45g)
1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese 
1/4 tsp salt or to taste




Directions for the Bechamel sauce
  1. In a saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. As soon as it melts, add the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until there are no lumps.
  2. Increase the heat to medium-low and add the milk in two additions, stirring constantly and continue until the sauce begins to thicken. When it starts to thicken add the grated cheese and stir well.  (It should be creamy without being too thick.)
  3. Remove from the heat and stir in salt and set aside until ready to use. 

Ingredients

For the Lasagna layering

1/2 cup Cheddar cheese (grated)
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese (grated) 
1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese (grated)

400g Lasagna sheets 
Meat Sauce prepared
Bechamel Sauce
Foil paper to cover 


Directions

Preparation of the Lasagna
  1. Soak lasagna sheets in hot water mixed with salt and oil for 5-10 minutes. Drain and keep aside. 
  2. Combine all the grated cheese in a small bowl and keep aside. 
  3. Grease an ovenproof casserole dish with butter. Pour a layer of meat sauce and spread evenly. 
  4. Then put a layer of soaked lasagna sheets overlapping each other. On top of that put the Bechamel sauce. 
  5. Sprinkle a layer of grated cheese mixture. Then put a layer of meat sauce and spread evenly. Repeat this process again. 
  6. End the layer with Bechamel sauce and sprinkle some additional grated cheese on top. 
  7. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  8. Bake for 25 minutes covered with foil paper and another 25 minutes uncovered. 
  9. Soon after baking, take out of oven and let the Lasagna sit for at least an hour before cutting. (when you let it sit, it will help you cut lasagna very neat)
  10. Slice and serve! Enjoy! 

NOTES:
  • You can refrigerate lasagna up to 2 days in the refrigerator and freeze the lasagna for up to two weeks before baking. 
  • If you want to freeze a baked lasagna, let it cool completely, cover with cling film and freeze. 
  • To bake a frozen baked Lasagna, you can first thaw it in the fridge overnight and bake it  loosely covered with foil the next day. 

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