Healthy lasagne recipe
This classic Italian dish has been given a healthy twist with courgette slices instead of the traditional pasta layers. Packed with veg, the lean mince bolognese and simple white sauce are still full of flavour, too. See method
- 500g lean minced beef
- 2 onions, finely chopped
- 2 celery sticks, trimmed
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 2 large carrots, peeled, grated
- 150ml red wine
- 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 400ml hot beef stock
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 tsp black peppercorns
- 550ml semi-skimmed milk
- 3 tbsp cornflour
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- ¼ whole nutmeg, freshly grated
- 2 large courgettes, very thinly sliced lengthways (approx. 2-3mm thick)
- 4 vine tomatoes, sliced
- 40g vintage Cheddar, coarsely grated
- 20g Parmesan, finely grated
- green salad or greens, to serve
If you don't have chopped tomatoes, chop up a tin of plum tomatoes instead
Each serving contains
of the reference intake
- Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Heat a large non-stick heavy-bottomed saucepan, add the beef mince, season well and fry over a medium-high heat for 5 mins, stirring frequently until golden brown. Add half the chopped onions and the celery and season. Fry over a medium heat for 5-6 mins or until softened. Add the garlic and fry for another minute. Add the grated carrots and red wine and bubble for 3-4 mins.
- Then add the tinned tomatoes, stock, and one of the bay leaves and bring to the boil. Cover with a lid, turn down the heat to medium-low and leave to simmer for 45 mins, stirring occasionally. Remove the lid and simmer for another 15 mins or until the sauce has thickened slightly.
- While the mince is cooking, put the rest of the onion in a saucepan with the remaining bay leaves, peppercorns and the milk (reserving 3 tbsp) and place over a low heat. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 2–3 mins. Remove from the heat and leave the milk to infuse for 10 mins. Drain through a sieve and discard the bay leaf, onion and peppercorns.
- Put the cornflour in a small bowl, add the reserved milk and whisk to a thick paste. Add to the infused milk, place over a low heat and simmer, stirring frequently for 5 mins or until thickened. Add the mustard and grated nutmeg and season well, adding a little more milk if the sauce is too thick.
- Bring a large pan of salted water to teh boil and blanch the courgette slices for 1 min, remove from the boiling water with tongs and drain well on kitchen paper. (It's important to get rid of as much water as possible at this stage or the lasagne will be very watery.)
- Spoon half of the mince mixture into a lasagne dish. Top with an even layer of blanched courgettes, then season well. Repeat with the rest of the mince and finish with the rest of the courgettes. Pour the white sauce over the top and place the sliced tomatoes in lines on the top. Mix the Cheddar and Parmesan cheeses and sprinkle over the top. Bake for 30 mins or until golden-brown and bubbling.
- Divide between 6 plates and serve with green salad or greens.
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