The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #165215 Message #4026575
Posted By: Steve Shaw
06-Jan-20 - 12:54 PM
Thread Name: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
We made a huge lasagne two nights ago. It's a collaboration, strictly speaking, as I let Mrs Steve make the béchamel ( we use strong cheddar mixed with parmesan and I don't care what anybody thinks) and assemble the thing. We are somewhat at odds over the ragù. She thinks I should be adding garlic-crusher garlic and I think garlic shouldn't go anywhere near. I compromise by chucking in a few peeled cloves that I've bashed with my fist. Over the years I've secretly removed dried herbs from the mix altogether. I'd rather hack off the family jewels with a rusty machete than add dried basil. As it's Christmas I did add a little sprinkle of dried oregano this time. A sprig of thyme wouldn't hurt. I always start with a soffritto in which I include some chopped unsmoked bacon or pancetta. The soffritto is equal parts chopped celery, carrot and onion in extra virgin olive oil, sautéed until the veg is softened. I brown the meat separately, not too much at once, by dry-frying in a big stainless steel frying pan I've inherited. The meat is half minced steak and half minced pork. Once browned it goes into the soffritto along with a bit of chicken stock, tomatoes (one 400ml tin of plum tomatoes fewer than the number of pounds of meat) and some seasoning. Maybe a splash of wine. That needs a good hour or more at a simmer. Two hours wouldn't hurt. Adjust for correct sloppiness with a bit more stock or tomato. Adding water is far too disappointing. Then it's over to the assembly dept. We cook it for about 40 minutes in a 180C oven. Leftovers are perfect microwaved for breakfast the next day. Either you serve it up with a drizzle of your finest olive oil on top or you're wrong. Some garlic bread and salad goes well. I've seen it on offer in pubs with chips. If you see that, call a constable immediately.