Vegetarian recipe ideas
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Put the carrot, celery, onions and pancetta in a small slug of olive oil in a large pan and cook gently for 10 minutes, or until the onion softens and the pancetta fat melts. Add the garlic and stir. Scoop the mixture onto a plate, leaving as much fat behind as possible. Put the pan back on the heat and add the beef mince, stir and fry until it is browned, then tip onto the plate again leaving behind the fat. Add the pork or veal mince and brown it in the same way. Tip the beef and veg back into the pan and add the white wine and bay leaf, bubble everything up and stir in the tomato purée. Add the tomatoes, season well and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for 45 minutes – after 35 minutes add the milk and leave the lid off. If the sauce is too thin, bubble it until it thickens a little. Season and remove the bay leaf.
To make the béchamel, melt the butter in a medium pan and stir in the flour and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the milk a little at a time over a low heat and then bring the mixture to a simmer. Keep stirring and cooking until the béchamel thickens, then cook over a low heat for 5 minutes, add the bay leaf and stir every now and then. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg, then remove the bay leaf.
Stir the basil into the meat sauce. Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.
Spoon a thin layer of béchamel into the base of a large ovenproof dish, and add a couple of spoonfuls of meat sauce. Add a layer of lasagne sheets, a layer of béchamel, then meat and lasagne, and repeat with a little béchamel and the remaining meat and pasta. Pour the remaining béchamel over the top and scatter over the mozzarella and parmesan. Cook for 40 minutes or until the pasta is cooked through. Sit for 10 mins before serving.
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