less than 30 mins
over 2 hours
Lasagne recipes are a very personal thing. Theo Randall invites you to try his version.
By Theo Randall
From Saturday Kitchen Best Bites
For the béchamel sauce
- 1 litre/1¾ pints full-fat milk
- 75g/3oz unsalted butter
- 125g/4½oz 00 flour
- 1 bay leaf
- 125g/4½oz grated parmesan cheese
- 2 free-range eggs yolks
For the ragu di manzo
- 110g/4oz unsalted butter
- 2 tbsp chopped celery
- 2 tbsp chopped carrots
- 2 tbsp chopped red onion
- 110g/4oz smoked pancetta
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary, leaves picked, chopped
- 1 kg/2lb 2oz trimmed veal or beef flank, finely chopped
- 50g/2oz prosciutto, roughly chopped
- 1 x 400g/14oz good-quality chopped tomatoes
- 125ml/4½fl oz white wine
- 110ml/4fl oz full-fat milk
- 1 x 250g/9oz pack fresh lasagne sheets
- olive oil, for greasing
- large handful grated parmesan
- For the béchamel pour the milk into a saucepan and bring to a simmer, turn off the heat and set aside.
- In a heavy saucepan, melt the butter, then whisk in the flour and hot milk. Whisk rigorously until smooth. Add the bay leaf, cover with a circle of greaseproof paper and cook slowly for 30-40 minutes. Remove the paper and bay leaf and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stir in the parmesan and egg yolks and set aside to cool.
- For the ragu, melt the butter in a large casserole dish until foaming. Add the celery, carrots, onion, pancetta and rosemary and fry for five minutes. Stir in the veal and prosciutto and cook for a further five minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, white wine and milk and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and cook slowly for 1½ hours – the meat should be broken down into small pieces and the sauce should have a rich thick consistency.
- Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas 3
- Blanch the pasta sheets in boiling salted water for one minute, then refresh in cold water.
- Rub olive oil into the sides of a baking dish. Place a layer of pasta onto the base of the dish and then add an even layer of beef ragu, followed by a layer of béchamel sauce. Repeat this process until you have used all the pasta and finish with a thick layer of béchamel on top. Sprinkle the top with a generous layer of parmesan cheese.
- Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes, or until bubbling and pale golden-brown on top.
- Cut the lasagne into squares and serve.