Lasagne is everybody’s favourite comfort food, but it can be very high in fat, especially if shop-bought. This version includes plenty of fresh vegetables and lean minced beef in its filling, making it a healthy option. Serve with a crisp green salad.
Preparation time 20 minutes
Cooking time about 13⁄4 hours
Ingredients for healthiest-ever lasagne
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
4 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
350 g lean minced beef
150 g button mushrooms, chopped
300 ml diluted salt-reduced beef stock
150 ml red wine or extra beef stock
400 g can chopped tomatoes
2 teaspoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried oregano or mixed herbs
1⁄4 cup (15 g) chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
10 instant lasagne sheets
1⁄3 cup (40 g) grated mature cheddar cheese
For the sauce
1⁄4 cup (30 g) cornflour
600 ml low-fat milk
pinch of grated nutmeg
Preparation method for healthiest-ever lasagne
1. To make the meat sauce, heat the oil in a large saucepan over a low heat. Add the onion and fry gently for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the carrots, celery and garlic and cook, stirring, for a further 5 minutes until the onion is soft and just beginning to colour.
2. Turn up the heat a little, then add the beef mince and cook, stirring and breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until browned and crumbly. Add the mushrooms and cook for 1 more minute. Add the stock, wine or extra stock, tomatoes with their juice, tomato paste and dried herbs and stir together thoroughly. Bring the mixture to the boil, then cover with a lid and gently simmer over a low heat for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the parsley and season to taste
3. Preheat the oven to 180°C. To make the sauce, mix the cornflour to a smooth paste with a little of the milk in a small bowl. Heat the remaining milk to boiling point in a saucepan, then pour some of it onto the cornflour mixture, stirring well. Return this to the milk in the saucepan. Bring to the boil, stirring until the sauce thickens, then simmer for 2 minutes. Stir in the grated nutmeg and season to taste.
4. Spoon half the meat sauce over the base of a 3 litre ovenproof dish or roasting tin. Cover with half the lasagne sheets, then spoon over the remaining meat sauce and cover with another layer of pasta. Pour over the white sauce to cover the lasagne completely. Scatter the grated cheddar cheese over the top of the lasagne.
5. Place the dish on a baking tray and bake for about 45 minutes until the lasagne is bubbling and the top is lightly browned. Remove from the oven and leave to rest for about 10 minutes before serving.
Each serving provides
43 g protein
24.5 g fat of which 8 g saturates
60 g carbohydrate
7.5 g fibre
483 mg sodium
2784 kilojoules (665 Calories)