Monday, November 9, 2009

Staff Meal Lasagne

Some of you may think that this post is a cop-out because it isn't exactly French Laundry food... however, staff meal is an extremely important part of restaurant culture.... I believe that you can tell a lot about a restaurant by what they feed their staff. At the last restaurant(s) I worked at, we were treated to some pretty great food on a daily basis, and it was easy to see that it was much appreciated by all.

That being said... I thought it was important to make this dish, because I was interested to see the kind of food that Thomas Keller feeds to the (pretty amazing) staff at his acclaimed restaurant. I have made my own version of lasagne tons of times and really don't need any instruction (if I do say so myself :)), but I stuck to the recipe from the book this time around.

First, I chopped up some onions and garlic:

and peeled and diced up a bunch of tomatoes:

Then, I sauteed the onion and garlic in some olive oil until soft and just translucent, and added in the tomato paste, cooking until the mixture turned a vibrant orange color:

Well, my camera skills need some work, but I promise it was orange :)

I added in the tomatoes and cooked the sauce gently for 2 hours on the stove top, stirring frequently to avoid scorching the tomatoes on the bottom of the pot. This was necessary since I used chopped tomatoes only with no juice (as you would have when using canned tomatoes). After it was done cooking, I removed the sauce from the heat, added some chopped oregano, salt and pepper, and put it aside to cool to room temperature. The resulting sauce was thick and somewhat chunky... it looked like this:

While the sauce was cooling, I boiled the lasagne noodles and made the mixture for the filling. The filling consisted of ricotta cheese, eggs, chopped parsley, salt and pepper:

Now it was time to build the lasagne. First sauce:



And repeat!

To finish, I topped off a final layer of noodles with the remaining sauce and sprinkled it with some seasoned grated mozzarella cheese. Before it went in the oven it looked like this:

After 45 minutes in a toasty oven, the lasagne was bubbling and ready:

One slice on the plate....

Mmmmmm... definitely a good lasagne. The sauce and the filling were flavorful and well-seasoned, and it was light while still filling me up! I have to admit, I did miss the little mini meatballs and definitely the parmigiano cheese, but this is a good, simple lasagne recipe.

Coming up next, something sweet (I promise this time!)...

Comments make my day :)

All Grocery and Produce - Met Foods, Brooklyn, NY

1 comment:

  1. Looks delicious. Curious about the taste of the filling.