Friday, June 20, 2008

Two-Sauce Weeknight Lasagna Bowls

A couple of weeks ago, I was on the phone w/ my grandmother. She knows how much I love to cook and try new things, so she was telling me about an episode of Rachael Ray where she made this fake lasagna dish. She described it so well that I had to look it up and check it out.

Coincidentally, the day I went to the Food Network's website to see the recipe, the show aired. Cool! And yes indeed, it looked amazing.

And yes indeed, it TASTES amazing!

I was at first intimidated by the number of ingredients, but it's really all stuff I have on hand anyway. I love dishes where I don't have to buy a lot of stuff!

It was super easy to throw together, and I just love the white sauce mixed in first. It really adds a whole 'nother level of flavor and sets it apart from regular old pasta with meat sauce.

  • Salt
  • 1 pound Campanelle pasta
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 pound pancetta, a couple of thick slices, chopped (I omitted.)
  • 3/4 pound ground beef pork and veal mix or ground beef
  • 1/2 large carrot, peeled and grated or finely chopped
  • 1 small to medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, 2 chopped or grated, 1 peeled
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice, a couple of pinches
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste (I actually ended up also adding some crushed tomatoes; I really couldn't imagine this "lasagna" dish without it!)
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • Nutmeg, to taste
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano, plus some to pass at table
  • A handful fresh parsley leaves, finely chopped
Heat large pot of water to a boil, salt water and cook pasta to al dente.
While pasta water comes to a boil, heat olive oil in a medium sauce pot over medium-high heat, add pancetta and render 2 to 3 minutes then add meat and break up as it browns. When the meat has begun to caramelize and develops a nice brown color, 4 to 5 minutes, add carrot, onion, 2 cloves of garlic, allspice, salt and pepper and a bay leaf. Cook 3 to 4 minutes more to soften onions and carrots bits then stir in tomato paste and cook for 2 minutes, then stir in wine and cook out 1 minute then stir in stock and reduce heat to simmer.
While red sauce cooks, cut remaining whole clove of garlic and rub the inside of a medium sauce pot with it. Melt butter in pot over medium heat. Add in flour and whisk together a minute or so then whisk in milk and bring to a bubble, reduce heat then season sauce with salt, pepper and nutmeg, thicken 8 to 10 minutes.
Toss pasta with white sauce and 1/2 cup grated cheese. Serve pasta in individual bowls and top with a ladle of meat sauce in the middle of the bowl for mixing in. Garnish with parsley.


  1. I saw this episode, and it looked so good! I am glad you liked it- I will have to try it.

  2. I just saw that episode! It looked so good - glad to know you loved it, now I'll definitely have to give it a try :)


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