Did you know that the lasagna that you (well, I am assuming here) and I grew up eating was an American-ized version of the Italian version? I had no clue! Not that there’s anything wrong with American-ized versions of stuff. I prefer the -er spelling of theater. I love lots and lots of ricotta cheese. However, I wanted to try to make the real thing. Plus, I had this crazy desire to make my own tomato sauce. I’m glad I did, because this lasagna was delicious.
1 package of lasagna noodles, prepared
1 onion diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 carrot, sliced
1 celery stalk, sliced
28 oz of diced tomatoes
1/2 lb of ground beef
salt/pepper, to taste
5 cups of whole milk
5 tablespoon of butter
5 tablespoons of flour
1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg
salt/pepper, to taste
1 cup of parmesan cheese, grated
1. In a large sauce pan, add a bit of olive oil, cook the onions and garlic until soft. Add the ground beef. Cook until the ground beef is no longer pink. Add the carrots, celery, and tomatoes. Add salt/pepper to adjust taste. Cook over medium heat for 45 minutes. Add 1 cup of milk and cook for an addition 15 minutes over low heat.
2. In a medium sized saucepan, melt the butter and add the flour, one tablespoon at a time. Over medium high heat, add the milk, little by little, allowing to bubble as you add the milk. Once all the milk has been added, add the nutmeg and salt/pepper. Allow to simmer, while stirring continuously, until the mix has thickened.
3. To assemble the lasagna, drop 3-4 tablespoons of the meat sauce to the bottom of a 9×11 casserole dish. Take 4 noodles, and place at the bottom of the casserole dish. Add 1/4 of the sauce, then 1/3 of the milk mixture, and 1/4 of the parmesan cheese, repeat this 2 more times. Add the last 1/4 of the meat sauce and cheese to the top layer of noodles.
4. At 425 degrees, bake the lasagna for about 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 15 minutes. Serve with a salad and a glass of wine.
What a yummy treat! My husband loved that it wasn’t excessively cheesy. I like the creamy tomato sauce. I won’t lie, I missed the ricotta, but there are always other opportunities for making and eating ricotta!