The lovely Rosetta and Mike are coming for lunch tomorrow! We haven't seen Rosetta for ages (or for hours, as C would say). Lasagne and baked blueberry cheesecake are on the menu. Lasagne recipe below (cobbled together from quite a few different recipes to get a final version that we love), and blueberry cheesecake from this book.
Serves 4 - 6
200g fresh lasagne sheets
150g fresh mozzarella, sliced thinly
1 large handful of basil leaves
4 tbsp of basil pesto
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
¼ cup grated mozzarella
2 tbsp oil
2 medium onions, finely chopped
4 gloves garlic, finely chopped
1 medium green pepper
1 tsp basil
½ tsp thyme
½ tsp sugar
690 ml tomato purée
¼ cup red lentils, cooked
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
¼ cup water
2 ½ tbsp plain flour, sifted
¼ cup mozzarella, grated
Pinch ground nutmeg
Salt and pepper, to taste
Sauté the onion and the garlic in the oil, stirring occasionally. Stir in the finely chopped green pepper and continue to cook until everything has softened and the onion turns clear.
Add the seasonings, tomato purée, fresh tomatoes, cooked red lentils, spinach (if using frozen spinach, does not need to be thawed first), vinegar and water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and leave to simmer while you prepare the rest.
Melt the butter in a saucepan (low heat). Add the sifted flour, stirring all the time. Slowly add the milk, stirring with a whisk to keep the sauce nice and smooth. Once all of the milk has been added and the sauce has reached the desired consistency, remove from heat and stir in the grated mozzarella. Season with salt, pepper and a little nutmeg.
Preparing the lasagne:
Preheat the oven to 180C.
Lightly oil a 6cm deep rectangular ovenproof dish.
Spread one third of the tomato sauce in the bottom of the prepared dish. Top with half of the lasagne, another third of the sauce, the fresh basil, then all of the bechamel sauce. Carefully mix the pesto into the layer of bechamel sauce, top with sliced mozzarella, the grated parmesan and half of the lasagne. Spread the remaining one third of pasta sauce over the lasagne and top with grated mozzarella.
If using a fan-forced oven cover with foil. Bake at 180C for approximatley 35 minutes.