Difficulty

cost

time

1 h

Lasagne

Beyond ragu! Lasagne is a versatile dish that lends itself to many different interpretations, based on personal preferences or the availability of seasonal ingredients. Here are two examples from the Italian culinary tradition.

 

Genoese baked lasagne

INGREDIENTS FOR 10

For the egg pasta:
Plain flour   370 g
Eggs   no. 3 (180 g)
Water    as needed
Fine salt   8 g

For the béchamel sauce:
Milk    1000 g
Butter   80 g
Plain flour   80 g
Fine salt   8 g

For the filling:
Béchamel sauce    1200 g
Potatoes   500 g
String beans   400 g
Genoese pesto sauce   250 g
Ricotta cheese   250 g
Butter   100 g
Parmigiano reggiano cheese   40 g
Fine salt   to taste
White pepper   to taste

WHAT YOU’LL NEED IN YOUR KITCKEN

Casserole
Rolling press
An ovenproof baking dish or a roasting tin

Follow These 5 Steps to Start

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Make a dough with all the ingredients for the egg pasta and knead until uniform. Wrap in transparent film and let it rest in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.

Roll out the dough, using the rolling press. Cut the pasta into losanges about 15 cm long and boil quickly in salted water. Drain, cool quickly in ice water, drain again and spread on a clean tea towel to dry.

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Prepare the béchamel sauce by pouring the hot salted milk onto the roux of butter and flour. Cook for 2 minutes more and keep warm.

Skin and cube or slice the potatoes, then steam or boil until cooked. Boil the finely diced string beans. Toss the potatoes and string beans in a frying pan with butter.

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In a buttered ovenproof dish or a roasting tin, start your assembly with a layer of béchamel and a layer of pasta. Add a layer of béchamel, then a layer of potatoes and string beans, then dot with ricotta cheese and pesto sauce. Cover with a layer of pasta and continue in the same order. The top layer should be just béchamel sprinkled with grated cheese. Bake until golden and crispy and serve.

Baked lasagne with vegetables

INGREDIENTS FOR 10

For the egg pasta:
Plain flour   370 g
Eggs   no. 3 (180 g)
Water    as needed
Fine salt   8 g

For the béchamel sauce:
Milk    1000 g
Butter   80 g
Plain flour   80 g
Fine salt   8 g

For the filling:
Béchamel sauce   1200 g
Parmigiano reggiano cheese   200 g
Carrots   150 g
Courgettes   100 g
Peas   100 g
Tomatoes   100 g
Green asparagus   100 g
White asparagus   100 g
Spring onions   80 g
Red and yellow peppers   80 g
Leek   50 g
Fresh basil   to taste
Fine salt   to taste
White pepper   to taste

WHAT YOU’LL NEED IN YOUR KITCKEN

Casserole
Rolling press
An ovenproof baking dish or a roasting tin

Follow These 4 Steps to Start

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Prepare the lasagne and the béchamel sauce as indicated in the Genoese baked lasagne recipe.

Clean and slice or finely dice the vegetables. Steam the vegetables separately to respect the cooking times for each variety except for the peas, which must be boiled.

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In a buttered ovenproof dish or a roasting tin, start your assembly with a layer of béchamel and a layer of pasta. Continue with layers of béchamel, vegetables mixed together, a julienne of fresh basil and grated parmigiano cheese. Cover with a layer of pasta and continue in the same order. The top layer should be just béchamel sprinkled with grated cheese.

Bake until golden and crispy and serve.

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The cook’s secret

All the vegetables can be varied in the proportions and the varieties. Choose fresh vegetables available in each season of the year. The vegetables can also be cooked by tossing in a pan with evo oil, again separately to respect the cooking times for each variety. The lasagne will be more flavourful, but also more caloric.

Glossary

String beans: are a member of the legume family. They arrived in Europe after the discovery of America and are now diffused throughout Italy and around the world. Unlike other legumes, in addition to the seeds (or beans), we also eat the pods of string beans. This vegetable is low in calories and rich in fibre.

String beans
green asparagus

PGI Green asparagus of Altedo: grown in Emilia Romagna, it has a particularly tender, delicately flavoured green turion. [PGI refers to a certified local variety.]

White asparagus of Bassano del Grappa: asparagus with a distinctive bitter-sweet taste, grown in the Veneto region. It has well-formed turions, a straight shaft, white colour, length about 20 centimetres. The consistence is tender, not woody. Appearance and aroma are fresh.

white asparagus
Ricotta cheese

PDO Ricotta cheese of buffalo milk Campania: a fresh cheese, with low fat content. There are two types: fresh, short life (seven days) and fresh homogenized with shelf life of twenty-one days from the date of production. Produced in the form of a porcelain white truncated cone without a crust, it is soft and creamy, granular but not gritty. With the aromas of milk and cream, the taste is fresh and sweet.

How Much Do You Know…?

To cook 100 grams of dry pasta, the right proportions are:

Today, the preparation of fresh, home-made pasta is almost a habit of the elite, substituted by the quick and practical dry pasta. However, the desire for fresh pasta has not disappeared and the market of food products has dedicated years to offering a vast variety of fresh pasta products ready for cooking.