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http://www.lifestylefood.com.au/recipes/6284/traditional-lasagne

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Traditional lasagne

A little time consuming but worth every minute, you can't go wrong with this Italian crowd pleaser.

Ingredients

  • For the mince sauce

  • 125g (4oz) streaky bacon, diced

  • 150ml (quarter pint) good olive oil

  • 2 onions, finely diced

  • 2 carrots, peeled and finely diced

  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed with a little salt

  • 2 teaspoons soft thyme leaves

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano

  • 2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes

  • 2 tablespoons tomato puree

  • 2 tablespoons anchovy essence

  • 2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce

  • 1.75kg (4lb) minced beef

  • 1 bottle dry red wine, optional

  • 2.4 litres (4 pints) chicken, beef or lamb stock

  • salt and ground black pepper

  • To assemble the lasagne

  • olive oil for greasing

  • 2 packet of ready to cook lasagne

  • 2 tubs cheese sauce, ready made from the supermarket

  • 2 jars of puttanesca sauce

  • 2 oz grated parmesan, to sprinkle

  • 4 oz grated gruyere cheese to sprinkle

Method

  • For the mince sauce:

  • 1.

    In a large heavy based saucepan, fry the bacon in 2 tablespoons of olive oil. When the bacon is crispy and has released some natural fats, add the onion, carrots, garlic, thyme, bay leaves and oregano and cook over a medium heat until the vegetables have softened and taken on a little colour.

  • 2.

    Add the tinned tomatoes, the tomato puree, anchovy essence and Worcestershire Sauce. Stir to combine and continue to cook.

  • 3.

    Meanwhile in a large frying pan, heat a little of the remaining olive oil and fry off the mince in small batches until browned. While the meat is frying, break up any lumps with the back of a wooden spoon. Repeat until all the meat is used up. After each batch, add the meat to the sauce mix.

  • 4.

    Deglaze the frying pan with some of the red wine, scraping any crusty bits from the bottom, pour this wine, the remaining wine and the stock into the meat pot. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer, stirring from time to time, for about 2 hours. Season to taste. If the liquid reduces too much, top up with water or extra stock. When the meat is tender allow to cool, then refrigerate. When cold, lift off the solidified fat and discard, freeze mixture in smaller batches.

  • To assemble the lasagne:

  • 1.

    Take a medium sized baking dish and lightly grease with olive oil. Arrange a layer of mince across the bottom of the dish, spread the pasta sheets evenly over the top and then cover with a little cheese sauce and then puttanesca sauce. Repeat this until all the ingredients have been used up, ending with a thick layer of cheese sauce and puttanesca sauce.

  • 2.

    Combine both cheeses and sprinkle the top of the finished dish. Bake in a medium oven for 45 minutes or until golden brown.

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