Thursday, 22 May 2008

Individual lasagne with ricotta and tomato

Bill Granger has this lovely vegetarian free form lasagne in his book, Bills Food. I was looking for the recipe for his baked tomato and mozzarella pasta and found this. DD loves lasagne and I never seem to have time to make it. I don't like frozen/packet/premade lasagnes, so DD has to miss out or deal with me complaining about substandard lasagne.

This one, however, looked really easy and had the added bonus of not requiring a bechamel sauce. I found the method he recommends to be quite messy though and the next time I make it I think I will try it a different way. We only had one tin of tomatoes, so I substituted a jar of pasta sauce. This wasn't a very good idea, as it made the tomato sauce too sweet and too thick.

Even with a sweeter, thick sauce the lasagne was very good and I enjoyed it immensely. DD, unfortunately, still believes that it can never be true lasagne without meat.

Individual lasagne with ricotta and tomato
Adapted from Bills Food by Bill Granger

1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes
1 x 500g can garlic and red wine pasta sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
pinch of sugar
500g light ricotta
40g Parmesan, freshly grated
1 tsp minced oregano leaves
350g fresh lasagne sheets
fresh oregano leaves, for garnishing

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C. Cook the tomatoes and sauce in a medium saucepan over medium to low heat for 20 minutes or until slightly reduced. Add the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper and sugar and cook for another minute. Remove from heat.

Stir the ricotta, Parmesan, oregano and some salt and pepper together in a bowl.

Cut the lasagne sheets into sixteen 10cm squares and cook them, a few at a time, in a large saucepan of boiling salted water until al dente. Transfer to a bowl filled with cold water and a few drops of olive oil. When the sheets are cool, drain and place on a tea towel.

Pour 3/4 cup of the tomato sauce into a large roasting tin and spread to cover the base. Place four lasagne squares on the tomato sauce, keeping them separate. Spoon one-third of the ricotta mixture evenly among the squares. Place a second square on top of each and repeat the process to give four layers, finishing with lasagne squares. Spoon 2 tbs of sauce over each stack. Bake for about 25 minutes, until hot.

Serve with extra sauce and sprinkled oregano leaves. (I didn't have any extra sauce)

One of my stacks had to be cut in half to fit in the roasting tray. While it looks a bit messy it does show the layers quite nicely.

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