Monday, 3 September 2012

Greek Lasagne

Greek Lasagne

Like many people, I also did not know that pasta, specially lasagne originated in Greece and not in Italy. In old Grecian Era, the Greek had even a pan which was known as lasagne. It was specially used for preparing this dish. Pasta was introduced in Italy when Greek invaded the country. When I first heard this from a Greek colleague I was spellbound. But it is absolutely true. Though traditionally Greek never used tomatoes as it was not known to them, but I generously use it while preparing my dish, you can do it too. Now get ready and surprise everyone with this wonderful dish and the story behind it.

Preparation Time  : 40 minutes (including setting lasagne layers in pan
Cooking Time       : 25 - 35 minutes
Baking Time          : 1 hour
Difficulty               : Medium
Serves                   :  4

Ingredients :

  • 4 tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • 250 grams Chorrizo/ or any spicy sausage, thinly sliced
  • 2 Garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large Red Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Clove
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
  • 1 kilo Lamb or Mutton, mince
  • 1/2 cup White Wine (you can also opt for spiced vinegar, if you don't use wine)
  • 3 tablespoons Greek-style Plain Yoghurt
  • 1 cup fresh Parsley, roughly chopped
  • 400 grams Greek kasseri cheese, grated (as this is not available in India, use any cheese that melts, I use Britannia Cheese cubes, grated)
  • 100 grams Kefalotiri Raviera Cheese/ or any good Parmesan, grated
  • 12 sheets (375g) fresh Lasagne sheets, if you can't make fresh ones, used packaged variety, it is equally good. Prepare them as per instruction on the pack.

Method : 

 1) In a Skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over a medium heat.

 2) Add the sausages and cook for about 3 minutes, or until the pieces are golden brown.

 3) Remove the sausages and keep them aside. Leaving the remaining oil in the skillet.

 4) Return the skillet to the heat and add the garlic, onion, spices, salt, pepper and the lamb mince.

 5) Keep cooking until the lamb mince is browned.

 6)  When they are properly browned, add the wine and cook the mixture over a low heat for a further 5 minutes.

 7) Take the mixture off the heat and add the yoghurt and parsley and stir through.

 8) In a bowl, add both cheeses and combine well.

 9) Preheat the oven to 180 degree Centigrade.

10) In another skillet or a oven proof dish, add the remaining olive oil and swivel around so that it covers the base.

11) Place three lasagne sheets on the bottom to cover the base of the skillet/oven proof dish. (Don't forget to boil and drain the sheets as per instruction on the packet).

12) Top with some of the lamb mince and spread the mixture out to cover the lasagne sheets.

13) Place three more lasagne sheets on top to cover the lamb mince mixture.

14) Scatter enough cheese to cover the lasagne sheets.

15) Continue this process until you are left with a top layer of the cheese.

16) Place the skillet/oven proof dish in the oven and cook for 1 hour until the cheese has melted and is golden brown.

 17) Serve hot with some green salad.