Tuesday, March 20, 2012

recipe 19 lasagna

I recently mentioned that dear family and I just traveled to Italy. I now understand why people are transfixed with Italy. I feel that my taste buds are labeled before Italy, during Italy and after Italy. To be perfectly honest the during Italy is my favorite. Our trip was a world wind tour of the Italian Alps. We skied, ate, drank, skied, ate, slept, marveled at the fairytale setting that we were so lucky to be experiencing, and ate some more.  I recently read a New York Times article that discussed why food in Italy taste so differently than Italian food prepared in the US. The theory is that all the local proprietors that would supply ingredients to restaurants and markets are just that....local. So the cheese is from the cows a kilometer away. The eggs for the pasta are from the farm 2 kilometers the other direction. The veal. pork. beef are from another nearby merchant...the tomatoes and herbs are...you get the idea. It makes good sense to me. I know the best produce I can get outside of my backyard is from my local farm. So, in turn great local ingredients produce great food. Once preservatives and additives are thrown in the mix quality suffers, as do our taste buds, sadly.
The first day on the slopes we skied into a small cafe in the middle of nowhere. We were all so excited to experience our first real meal (night one was very good pizza). All of our meals were wonderful, but dear daughter ordered the best, lasagna. It didn't have the traditional cheese inside but a bechamel sauce instead. It made it light, airy, and almost cloud like. Oh and did I mention the bolognese sauce.

Here's the recipe from:

While the sauce was cooking for hours

I cooked the noodles and made the bechamel sauce. I made a classic version...feel free to use your favorite or simply google for a sauce that suits you....not too buttery, not too floury etc... Mark Bittman's is great.

I started with a layer of sauce, added noodles, bechamel, sauce, noodles,bechamel, sauce, noodles, until my pan was full. A little fresh mozzarella rounded everything off on top.

We added a green salad, bread and of course vin rosa. Buon appetito.

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