Friday, November 12, 2010

Lasagna Bolognese

Lasagna is like a savoury layered cake!

The layers are:
Bechamel sauce
Beef bolognese
Bechamel sauce
Beef bolognese
Bechamel sauce
Beef bolognese
Bechamel sauce
Bechamel sauce

So basically, start with bechamel sauce, then repeat (pasta + bechamel sauce + beef bolognese) as many times as you want, and end with bechamel again. 

I took orders for leftovers and brought them in individual lunch portions to school for my classmates.. they loved it :) I was so glad there were people who wanted to try my food!

Freshly picked Basil from my garden

Infusing Basil into the Bechamel Sauce
Pasta dough requires lots of yolk!
Whizzing up the dough
This is only my second time making lasagna from scratch, so I haven't got the bechamel and beef bolognese down pat yet. But I'm quite sure of my pasta dough recipe:

Pasta Dough (Makes about 600 cm squared of 2 mm thick lasagna sheets)

In a food processor, whiz up:
105g plain flour (I used Gold Medal brand bleached flour)
4 yolks
half an egg
1 Tbsp olive oil

Stop processing when the dough just comes together. 

1. Using a rubber spatula, scrape the dough onto a sheet of cling wrap.
2. Slide your fingers under the cling wrap and gently press the dough together, through the cling wrap, to form a ball. If the dough looks unevenly mixed, gently knead it through the cling wrap.
3. Wrap the cling wrap firmly around the ball by scrunching up the and twisting the ends. Refrigerate for 30 min to relax the dough.
4. When ready to assemble the lasagna, remove dough from refrigerator
5. Set the dough still covered in cling wrap on the countertop, with the twisted ends facing up. Untwist the ends and spread out the cling wrap. Sprinkle a little flour onto the dough, and on the cling wrap around it.
6. Put another sheet of cling wrap on top of the dough, and roll out till about 1 cm thick. Always roll the dough between sheets of cling wrap, or it will stick stubbornly to your rolling pin.  
7. When the dough reaches 1cm, peel back the cling wrap and sprinkle a little flour onto the dough. Flip over and repeat the sprinkling on the other side of the dough. Continue rolling till about 2 mm thick. 
8. Using a knife, cut out sheets to the size of your baking dish. 
9. Just before transporting each lasagna sheet into your dish, sprinkle a little flour on the top of the sheet. Slip one hand under the bottom cling wrap and turn the floured side onto your other hand. Transport quickly but confidently to the dish.

Note: If you put a sheet in the dish and realise it's a bit too small, simply tug gently at the sides, stretching them to reach the sides of the dish. 

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