optional: 2 tablespoons crushed red chillies or to
a heavy based saucepan, large enough to contain the mince beef and
sauce, add three tablespoons of vegetable oil. Allow to heat up over
medium to high setting. Add the chopped onions and the crushed garlic.
Allow the finely chopped onions to become transparent, then add the
mince beef. Stir the finely crushed garlic and finely chopped onions
with the minced beef until well mixed. Allow the minced beef to brown
and stir at intervals to prevent from burning, especially at the bottom
of the pan surface. If the minced beef releases a lot of fat or liquid,
you can skim it off.
Place the lasagna sheets in hot water to soften in a flat baking
Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste and one cup of hot water
to the cooked minced beef. Mix well until the crushed tomatoes and
tomato paste is well distributed within the minced beef. Allow to simmer
for two minutes.
the sugar or honey, chopped basil and parsley leaves, dry sherry, fennel
seeds, salt and pepper to taste. Optional: you can also add finely
crushed or chopped red chillies to taste. Mix well the ingredients with
the minced beef and tomato mixture. Cover and allow to simmer for one
hour over medium to low heat. Stir at intervals to make sure that the
minced beef or sauce does not stick to the pan or burn. Adjust the sauce
with little quantities of hot water if necessary to maintain consistency
if the mixture dries up. When the sauce is well blended with the tomato
sauce well cooked, remove from heat.
Prepare the Béchamel sauce as described in the Béchamel recipe
In a 25cm by 35cm baking pan or similar, spread a layer of meat
sauce at the bottom. Use not more than a third of the meat sauce. Remove
lasagna sheets from water one by one, allow the water to drip off and
place one layer on top of the meat sauce. Spread a thin layer of the Béchamel
sauce over the lasagna sheets, followed by a third of the parmesan
another layer of lasagna sheets. Spread half of the remaining meat sauce
over the lasagna sheets. Spread half of the remaining Béchamel sauce,
followed by half the remaining parmesan cheese.
Place another layer of lasagna sheets. Spread the remaining meat
sauce over the lasagne sheets. Spread the remaining Béchamel
sauce, followed by the remaining parmesan cheese.
Cover with aluminium foil and place in oven preheated at 180
degrees Centigrade. Allow to bake for 25 minutes. Remove aluminium cover
and bake uncovered for 30 minutes. If the top layer of cheese does not
attain a golden brown colour, place under grill but watch closely and
remove when a golden brown colour is attained. Be careful not to burn
the lasagna to settle down for 5 to 10 minutes. Cut into portions with a
sharp knife in the tray. Carefully remove with a flat spatulla.
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