Monday, 31 May 2010

Lasagne hammered down

Once again it's time for me to take a look at recipes you've sent in. This recipe is by Adam Rulewski from Lincolnshire, and he's 22 years old.

Adam was the guitarist in my ill-fated thrash band "Judgment Hammered Down" and like myself he enjoys cooking. We're so rock n' roll. Lasagne is a real classic and although I didn't get the chance to taste this one it looks and sounds great. For a heavy metal twist, he's used brie for the bechamel and a bit of paprika in the meat sauce. JHD!

  • 500g minced beef
  • 3 x shallots
  • 2 x garlic cloves
  • 1 x 400g tin of Italian tomatoes
  • Handful of fresh basil leaves
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1.5 tbsps paprika
  • Splash of red wine
  • A few knobs of butter
  • 3 tbsps plain flour
  • 2-3 star anise, crushed
  • About 300ml milk (I'd guess)
  • 3 tbsps olive oil
  • Block of brie
  • Enough lasagne sheets for three layers
  1. Turn the oven on at 180 degrees.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a pan on a medium heat and gently fry the shallots and garlic until the shallots are translusent. Add the tomatoes and season. Bring it to the boil and let it simmer gently.
  3. Meanwhile, heat some olive oil in another pan on a high heat and add the paprika and star anise. Season the minced beef and add it to the pan, making sure the bottom is covered. Don't fuck about stirring it or the beef will stew rather than fry - do this in batches if necessary. Once it's brown, deglaze the pan with a splash of red wine, add the tomato sauce and let it simmer for about an hour and a half until the sauce has thickened and the meat is tender.
  4. In a non-stick saucepan, melt the butter and add the flour to create a roux, then pour in the milk. Let it simmer until it's reached a nice thick consistency. Voila - you have bechamel.
  5. Soak some dried pasta sheets in hot water for a few minutes, then put them on the bottom of a baking dish, cutting them to fit if necessary. Add a layer of meat sauce, then add another layer of pasta sheets, then another layer of meat sauce, then another pasta layer and finally the bechamel.
  6. Cook it in the oven for about half an hour until the top has gone golden brown.
  7. Serve with a side of steamed kale or spinach.

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