Luigi's lasagna al forno

Yield: 10 servings

Measure Ingredient
½ Onion, chopped
1 Carrot, peeled and sliced very thin
1 Stalk celery, sliced very thin
4 Cloves garlic, sliced
¼ cup Olive oil
2 cans Plum tomatoes, drained (28 ounces each)
Salt, pepper, and sugar (optional), to taste
Red pepper flakes, to taste (optional
½ cup Red wine
FOR THE BECHAMEL
2 cups Milk
4 tablespoons Unsalted butter
4 tablespoons All-purpose flour
½ teaspoon Salt
½ teaspoon White pepper
Nutmeg, to taste
FOR ASSEMBLING
Olive oil and salt for cooking lasagna noodles
¾ pounds Lasagna noodles
15 ounces Ricotta cheese (1 container)
¼ To 1/3 pound mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced

FOR THE SAUCE

Grated Parmesan cheese (optional) To make the sauce, saute the onions, carrot, celery, and garlic in the olive oil until golden. Add the tomatoes, mashing them in the pot as they are added. Bring to a boil, then simmer over low heat, uncovered, for 1 hour. Add salt, pepper, sugar, and red pepper flakes; cook for another ½ hour, covered. In the last 20 minutes of cooking, add the red wine.

To make the bechamel sauce, bring the milk to a simmer in a small saucepan. Melt the butter in another saucepan and gradually whisk in the flour. Cook for about 2 minutes, but do not let the mixture turn brown. Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the hot milk, whisking constantly. Return the saucepan to low heat and cook, whisking constantly, for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the sauce is medium thick. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

Cook the lasagna noodles in salted boiling water, with a few drops of olive oil, until al dente. Drain.

In a 9-by-13-inch baking dish, spoon enough tomato sauce to just cover the bottom of the pan. Cover with a layer of lasagna noodles, then some tomato sauce. Spoon on a third of the ricotta cheese, then a third of the bechamel sauce. Cover with a layer of pasta, then tomato sauce, a third of the ricotta and a third of the bechamel.

Repeat one more time. Top with a layer of sliced mozzarella cheese.

Bake in a 375-degree oven for about 30 minutes, or until piping hot.

Remove from the oven and sprinkle with optional Parmesan cheese before serving.

Makes 10 servings.

Nutrients per Serving: 336 Calories, 13 g Protein, 26 g Carbohydrate, 21 g Fat, 10 g Saturated Fat, 50 mg Cholesterol, 483 mg Sodium.

[THE WASHINGTON POST; January 16, 1991] Posted by Fred Peters.

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