Lasagna Al Forno

The perfect hearty dish for family meals or casual entertaining.

Recipe courtesy of "The Illustrated Kitchen Bible: 1,000 Family Recipes from Around the World" by Victoria Blashford-Snell, copyright 2008. Used by permission of Dorling Kindersley Limited. All rights reserved.

Lasagna Al Forno

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    1 tbsp olive oil 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
    1 large onion, chopped 2 1/4 cups whole milk
    2 celery ribs, chopped 3/4 cup ricotta
    1 large carrot, peeled and chopped salt and freshly ground black pepper
    2 oz pancetta, diced 1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
    1 lb ground beef round 8 oz no-boil lasagna (12 sheets)
    one 14.5 oz (411 g) can chopped tomatoes with their juices 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
    1 tsp dried oregano 1/3 cup hearty red wine
    4 tbsp butter


    Prep: 25 min Total:
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    • 1

      To make the ragu sauce, heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, carrot, and pancetta and cook for 5 minutes, until softened. Add the beef and cook, breaking up with a spoon, about 10 minutes, until browned.

    • 2

      Add the tomatoes with their juices, the wine, and the oregano. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer for at least 40 minutes and up to 2 1/2 hours.

    • 3

      Meanwhile, make the white sauce. Melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat, whisk in the flour, and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in the milk. Cook, whisking often, until the sauce boils. Stir in the ricotta cheese and season with salt and pepper and nutmeg. Remove from heat.

    • 4

      Preheat the oven to 375°F. Oil a large rectangular (9 x 13 in) baking dish and spread 1/4 cup of the white sauce on the bottom. Arrange 3 lasagna sheets in the dish and top with one third of the ragu and 1/2 cup of the white sauce. Repeat layers twice more. Top with 3 lasagna sheets, the remaining white sauce, and the Parmesan cheese.

    • 5

      Bake for 45 minutes, until the top is golden and bubbling. Let stand 10 minutes, then serve hot.

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