Finally I am sharing my absolute ultimate favourite classic lasagne recipe that I have made millions (…well maybe not quite millions!) of times! It’s seriously delicious. Lots of layers of silky egg pasta, rich tomato-y meat sauce, slatherings of olive oil béchamel and a generous topping of cheese baked into a crispy-on-the-edges luscious-on-the-inside lasagne.
One thing I love making is olive oil béchamel. I don’t often have butter in my fridge but always always always have extra virgin olive oil so this is the perfect substitute. I really love my béchamel to be quite runny. I don’t like thick, claggy béchamel so I generally aim to make it with a consistency like thin pancake batter. I always love adding a generous grating of fresh nutmeg, but you can always omit this if you prefer. And I only spread the béchamel into two layers; one mid-way through and one on top before the cheese. But you can spread it out into more layers if you like, it’s up to you!
The key to any great lasagne in my opinion is *nailing* the sauce. For me, it’s got to be rich, thick and chunky. Because of this, I like to sauté the onion, carrots and mince until they begin to caramelise and brown. It’s so important to continue sautéing until you get this happening, because otherwise you end up adding the tomato sauce/passata and kind of boiling everything in it, rather than using the tomatoes to enrich the caramelisation and lift all the browned bits off the pan. Another key to making an amazing sauce, is always adding a generous splash of wine. You can use either dry white wine for a lighter flavour or a dry red wine for a deeper, richer flavour. I generally just use whatever I have in the house but do love a red wine sauce for Winter.
I love making a big tray and freezing slices for dinner later in the week or saving them in the fridge for lunches the next day. I think it might even taste better the next day!
When you’re ready to serve, to save your slices falling apart, make sure you rest your lasagne for around 10 minutes. It won’t go cold or cool down, but it will suck up all those delicious juices that are bubbling along the edges and make your lasagne slices firmer when you serve them.
I hope you guys enjoy this, it’s a personal favourite of mine! Mel x