A trouble free day was had, partly down to the fact that John broke the lockdown and ventured into the office in London. You see, the children generally play up for daddy and with him out of the equation, they all behaved impeccably.
I have to admit that deciding today would be lesson free, well, that was the deciding factor! The harmony of five screens, not 5 screams was enjoyed with just the lightest whisper of ‘my little pony’ echoing away in the background!
Daddy returned at 4pm and to my surprise, just one or two elevated moments. Dinner was had and now the troop have ascended the stairs to bed with Daddy accompanying them. Five kiss and hugs later and I am left at the kitchen table recounting my slightly reworked ‘JJ’s Lasagna’.
Right, we all eat lasagna don’t we? Well, unless you have a gluten intolerance or are following a Keto styled ‘Pre Agrarian Diet’ that is.
My children just love pasta and lasagna is amongst their favourite top 5 dishes of all time.
What makes a lasagna you may ask? Three things, no, four things I imagine. Bolognese sauce or a suitable mushroom or vegetable alternative, lasagna pasta sheets, béchamel / white sauce and cheese, usually cheddar, that’s what makes a lasagna.
Now a lovely fellow blogger JJ had a different take on this and I am sure that she wouldn’t mind me sharing it with you today.
How does ‘Spaghetti Lasagna’ sound? Hmmmh – have I got your ear? Well, when the children heard of this proposal, they chanted with glee.
However, I only had cooked puttanesca sauce (tomato and olive) in the fridge, plus 6 dry lasagna sheets and half a bag of penne pasta. So, I have had to make a few minor changes, sorry JJ. But it still tased great, I might add.
I absolutely hate making a cheese sauce, don’t you? That’s why I tend to buy in pre-made lasagna nowadays. Ridiculous really as we eat so much bolognese sauce in this house. I only go out of my way when it comes to dressing a lobster or king prawn thermidor with cheese sauce a plenty. Okay, here is the ‘real easy’ white sauce method.
Boil your milk. Make a beurre manet (is that spelt correctly)? This is the classic French way of thickening a sauce, just melted butter mixed with flour. Use a whisk and add the flour/butter mixture little by little whilst whisking. As the milk comes back to the boil, the sauce will quickly thicken. No lumps, no hastle, perfect sauce. Cook out for a minute and add 200g of cream cheese. Eh Voila, perfectly light, cheesy béchamel.
I used around a pint and a half of milk, just under a litre and just enough beurre manet for a good result. Hey I’m a chef when it comes down to the nitty gritty! I don’t need measurements! Lol
So, half your white sauce in the bottom of a baking tray, layer with cooked lasagna sheets. Do not use the dry one (boil it first)! Then a layer of your sauce. I used puttanesca. More lasagna sheets. Now here’s the fun bit!
Mix the remaining meat/olive/vegetable (whatever) sauce with the cooked penne and a splash of water. Layer your final lasagna sheets and finally the remaining white sauce. I could have sprinkled with grated cheddar, but I resisted the urge. Bake for 30/40 minutes in a medium oven.
The result looks and tastes amazing! Thank you JJ, from the bottom of our hearts. Scrummy 😊