This is my Dad’s beloved Veggie Lasagne recipe, and I’m deeply attached to it, blogging about it was a difficult endeavour, so please be kind about it in the comments, I’m a little scared my Dad will read this post and tell me off if I did anything wrong!
Anyone who lives in the UK at the moment will know that Derren Brown is showing a two-part programme called Apocalypse, which is where he makes a man believe it’s the end of the world in order to make him feel gratitude for the things he already has – it was AWESOME! I’m in love with Derren Brown, and my friend Chris is too, so I decided to make my Dad’s lasagne for him and my (Derren Brown convert after this show) boyfriend, and they both really liked it – in fact, Matt ate two thirds of the thing himself! Quite an accomplishment! As a teenager this was my favourite meal in the entire world because it’s so crunchy and creamy, so I’m going to make one for myself at some point, when I feel up to eating cheese again.
Apologies to vegans, this contains a hell of a lot of cheese, but it’s really worth it, as it goes all gooey and golden in the oven – delicious. It’s also really important to have all of these ingredients full-fat and indulgent – this is hardly a health dish, but you won’t care at all after you taste it!
For the vegetable layer
One tablespoon of oil
One white onion, finely chopped
One clove of garlic, finely chopped
One courgette, diced
One small aubergine, diced
One red pepper, diced
One large mushroom, sliced (I only added one because I hate mushrooms, but you can add more)
One can of chopped tomatoes
Around half a teaspoon each of basil, oregano and marjoram
Salt and pepper to season
For the cheese sauce
One bay leaf
Quarter of a teaspoon of nutmeg
A pinch of cloves
250ml of full-fat milk
A big knob of butter
One tablespoon of cornflour
One bag (yes, an entire bag) of ready-grated cheddar cheese – around 250g
One tub (yes, an entire tub) of marscapone cheese or Philadelphia cheese
Parmesan to sprinkle on top
About 6 fresh lasagne sheets
- Start to infuse the milk for the cheese sauce by simmering the milk with the bay leaf, nutmeg and cloves – stir often.
- Fry the onion and garlic in the oil until golden brown, then add the rest of the vegetables and stir until softened, about 5-10 minutes. Add in the chopped tomatoes and spices and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Make the cheese sauce by melting the butter, then stirring the cornflour in until thickened. Add in the warm milk (fish the bay leaf out first) and stir until smooth. Finally stir in the grated cheese and stir until really thick and smooth.
- Layer the lasagne like this: half of the cheese sauce, half of the vegetables, layer of pasta sheets, spread the tub of cream cheese over this, rest of vegetables, layer of pasta sheets, rest of cheese sauce, sprinkle over Parmesan.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius, then cook the lasagne for 40 minutes until the cheese is all golden and lovely. If you want to save some for another day, heat it up for 20 minutes before you eat it.
It’s meant to serve 6… but yesterday it was just about enough for Matt and Chris on their own…