Learn how to make a traditional Italian lasagne with this rustic recipe.


  • Meat and tomato sauce

  • 4 tablespoons olive oil (EVO optional)

  • 2 celery sticks (medium, finely diced)

  • 2 carrots (medium, finely diced)

  • 1 brown onion (large, finely diced)

  • 4 garlic cloves (finely diced)

  • 4 large lasagne sheets (fresh or dry)

  • 750 grams premium beef or pork mince

  • ½ cup of red wine

  • 800 grams Italian diced tomatoes (2 cans)

  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder

  • ½ teaspoon paprika (smoky, if you desire)

  • ½ teaspoon Italian dried herbs (use fresh if you desire)

  • Seasoning sea salt and cracked black pepper

  • 70 grams of shredded mozzarella

  • Bechamel (white cheese sauce)

  • 60 grams salted butter (cubed)

  • ? cup plain flour

  • 1 litre milk

  • 1 brown onion (medium, rough dice)

  • 6 black peppercorns

  • 3 cloves

  • 3 bay leaves

  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese

  • Season with sea salt, black pepper and nutmeg


  • Meat and tomato sauce:

  • 1.

    Put a large pot on a medium heat.

  • 2.

    Add olive oil to pot and allow it to heat up for 5 minutes.

  • 3.

    Put in the diced onion, garlic, celery, carrots, cumin, paprika and italian herbs.

  • 4.

    Cook for around 5 minutes until it is starting to caramelise, onions should be going translucent.

  • 5.

    Add in the mince meat and cook it for around 5 minutes, the mince will start to change colour. Break up any lumps that form with a wooden spoon.

  • 6.

    Next add in the red wine and tomatoes, bring up to the boil.

  • 7.

    Turn down the heat to a nice low and simmer, stir occasionally for around 30 minutes, the sauce will thicken as it reduces this is what you want.

  • 8.

    Season to taste with the sea salt and cracked black pepper, remove from the heat.

  • Bechamel (white cheese sauce):

  • 1.

    Put a large pot on a medium heat.

  • 2.

    Add milk, onion, peppercorns, cloves and bay leaves.

  • 3.

    Bring up to a medium heat and then simmer for 5 minutes then turn off heat and allow to infuse for 10 minutes.

  • 4.

    Next get a fine sieve or colander and strain the milk mix into a easy to pour jug or bowl. You can discard the solids.

  • 5.

    Put the butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat, once it is melted add the flour and cook it out for about 3 minutes. Stir well with a wooden spoon so it doesn't stick and burn. Turn heat to low.

  • 6.

    Put a whisk in the saucepan and start slowly pouring in the milk mix. Keep whisking it as you go until it is a smooth consistency, make sure there is no lumps.

  • 7.

    Turn the heat up again and bring the mixture to the boil. Keep stirring with a wooden spoon and leave it for 5 minutes. Check that the sauce coats the back of the spoon. Turn off the heat and add the parmesan cheese stir it well until it's all melted. Season the sauce with sea salt, cracked black pepper and a bit of nutmeg.

  • To assemble:

  • 1.

    Preheat oven to 185c.

  • 2.

    Brush or spray a large rectangular 24cm by 39cm baking dish with olive oil. Spread about one-quarter of the bechamel sauce over the base of the dish. Place 1 large lasagne sheet evenly over the sauce. Next spread one third of the tomato meat sauce and one-third of the remaining bechamel sauce.

  • 3.

    Continue layering with the remaining lasagne sheets, tomato meat sauce and bechamel, make sure you finish with a layer of bechamel.

  • 4.

    Sprinkle mozzarella and parmesan cheese and some cracked pepper over the top then place on a baking tray in the oven. Bake for about 40 minutes or until cheese melts and is golden brown. When it is ready remove it from oven and let it rest for about 10 minutes.

  • 5.

    Cut it into 8 large slices and serve with crusty bread and a side salad or vegetables.

Nutritional information

Nutritional analysis per serving (8 servings)

  • Energy 559kj
  • Fat Total 27g
  • Saturated Fat 12g
  • Protein 36g
  • Carbohydrate 38g
  • Sugar 10g
  • Sodium 504mg

Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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