Saturday, October 05, 2013

Lasagne With "Meat"-Women's Day Encyclopedia of Cookery 1966

Not the best photo, I know.

Another of Danny's Friday meals. He substituted a vegetarian mince, which turned out nicely. Don't be frightened by the amount of cheese in this thing-it makes enough for several meals-we'll get at least three days out of this, possibly four.

Many of the instructions seem silly, like cubing the cheese rather than grating it. Danny followed the recipe as written, though he covered the lasagne with foil for the first half of cooking, as he was concerned the cheese might not melt. Indeed, baking at 325 degrees F. it may well have remained solid-ish blobs. I would also increase the temperature to 350 degrees F. which he did for the second half of the baking time.

Danny wanted to try store bought noodles for this, and as the filling is so incredibly heavy, it was a good thing he did. Delicate noodles are fine and well for the sort of thing I typically make, but this required the structural support of a commercial noodle. The lasagne sliced neatly, and I doubt that would have been the case with homemade noodles.

Danny made the spaghetti sauce as well, using mushrooms cooked in a glug of wine added later. I had him go ahead and make a large pot, because if you're bothering to make sauce, there should be enough to freeze for a second meal. This is a home economics lesson, after all.

You Will Need:

3/4 pound ground beef (or veggie mince-we used Lightlife)
1/2 teaspoon salt (omit this if using the veggie stuff)
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind (sounds crazy, but it works)
2 tablespoons (or more) olive oil
3 cups tomato sauce
1 pound lasagne noodles, cooked
1 pound ricotta or cottage cheese (we used cottage cheese drained, and forced through a sieve)
1 pound mozzarella cheese, cubed (I would grate this next time)
1 1/2 cups grated parmesan cheese

The recipe doesn't say to, but Danny left out about 1/2 cup each mozzarella and parmesan for the very top of the lasagne. It looks nicer when served.

Season beef with salt, pepper, and lemon rind. Brown in hot oil. Combine cheeses. Cook noodles. Line the bottom of a large, deep pan with sauce. Lay in the noodles, then half the cheese mixture. Spread with half the sauce. Then half the meat. Add another layer of noodles and repeat. At the very end, scatter the reserved cheese on top. Cover lightly with foil. Bake 30 minutes at 350 degrees F. Remove foil, bake another 20-30 minutes or until cheese is bubbling and golden. Let stand a few minutes before slicing.

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