It’s not often I blog about food on here, in fact this blog hasn’t been updated for a while now as I’ve been that busy with so much other stuff, hopefully this post will change that and there will be a bit more outdoors stuff coming soon along with some updates on my quest to get fitter and lose more weight…although this recipe isn’t going to help with that.
This is a twist on a classic lasagne which I went down a storm when I made it last week. Some of the quantities are approximate as I didn’t really measure as I went along, the key is just to taste everything as you go along. It might be quite nice with a little bit of rosemary in but I’d ran out so didn’t try it.
I cooked the brisket in the slow cooker but you could do it in the oven or in a pan if you don’t have a slow cooker. Depending on how you cook the beef you may need a bit more red wine or some beef stock/hot water.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 red onion, peeled
- 1 large carrot, peeled
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled
- 2 pinches dried oregano
- 2 star anise
- 1 beef stock cube
- 10 chestnut mushrooms
- 500g Brisket of beef chopped into huge chunks..the bigger the better.
- 1 tbsp tomato purée
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 bay leaf
- 300ml good quality red wine
- 2tbsp corn flour
- 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes with herbs
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the sauce
- 25g butter
- 25g flour
- 300ml milk
- Pinch of ground nutmeg
- 100g Cheddar cheese, grated
- 30g Parmesan cheese, grated
- 6 sheets of ‘non-cook’ lasagne sheets
- Coat the meat in the corn flour and season with salt and pepper.
- Grate the carrot and finely slice the onion, chop the mushrooms, and crush the garlic, Heat the olive oil in a pan before frying the carrot, garlic onion and mushrooms together. Season with the bay leaf, a pinch of oregano, Worcestershire sauce, star anise and a little salt and pepper. Allow the onion and mushroom to soften before making a well in the centre of the pan. Place the chunks of meat in the middle of the pan and stir well. Crumble in the stock cube then add the tomato purée and allow to cook out for 30 seconds. Continue until all the meat has browned nicely. Add the wine and cook off the alcohol before adding the tomatoes. Leave to simmer for a further 2-3 minutes. Tip into your slow cooker and cook for 6-8 hours on medium.
- When the meat is tender and will pull apart, remove the bay leaf and star anise, then pull the meat into long strands using two forks, mix with the sauce. At this point if you think it’s all a bit runny then you can reduce in a pan on the hob.
- Pre-heat the oven to 225°C.
- To make the cheese sauce, first melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the flour and using a wooden spoon, stir to form a paste. Over a gentle heat add a third of the milk, whisking to prevent any lumps forming. Add the rest of the milk a third at a time, whisking as you go. Season with salt and pepper and a pinch of ground nutmeg. Allow the sauce to cook out for another minute before adding the Cheddar cheese. Stir and remove from the heat.
- Spoon half of the meat and sauce into the bottom of the baking dish and place pasta sheets on top (break the sheets if necessary to avoid any overlapping). Next, pour in just under half of the cheese sauce, and spread evenly using a spatula before spooning the remaining meat on top. Add the final layer of pasta and use the spatula to pour over the remaining cheese sauce.
- Finish with the grated Parmesan and sprinkle with another pinch of oregano and some grated nutmeg. Add a light seasoning of salt and pepper before cleaning the edges of the dish and placing in the oven to bake for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Serve with a huge side salad and some garlic bread, oh and the rest of the wine.