Monday, 30 August 2010

Home made lasagne


  • 80g Flour
  • 80g Butter
  • ltr Milk
  • 150g Cheese (Mozzarella/Gruyere/Emmenthal)
  • 1 tbsp Grapeseed Oil or Olive Oil
  • 3 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 White Onion
  • Pinch of Dried Thyme
  • Pinch of Dried Basil
  • Pinch of Dried Oregano
  • 1.5kg Lean Minced Beef
  • 800g Tinned Plum Tomatoes
  • 18 Lasagna Sheets
  • 800g Spinach


    1.To start making the sauce, melt the butter in a medium sized pot on a low flame. When the butter has melted add the flour and, using a wooden spoon, combine and continue cooking for a further 2 minutes taking care not to stop stirring;
    2.Heat up your milk in a small pan and when it comes to the boil add it to the roux you made in the first pan. It is very important at this stage to switch to a whisk and continue whisking thoroughly for a further 2/3 minutes until the sauce is velvety smooth;
    3.When the sauce is completed cover with a layer of cling film and set aside;
    4.Place a large frying pan on a medium heat and add some grapeseed oil. When it reaches the right temperature add your onions and garlic and cook for 2 minutes until they start to become aromatic and translucent;
    5.Add your dried herbs (basil, oregano and thyme) to the onions and garlic;
    6.Add the beef to the frying pan and using a spatula or wooden spoon move the beef around and break up any lumps until it is golden brown;
    7.When the meat is golden brown season it with salt and pepper and add your tins of whole plum tomatoes, again using the spatula to break them up slightly;
    8.Turn the temperature down and cook for 20/25 minutes on a low heat;
    9.Start making layers, in your oven proof lasagna dish, using alternative layers of lasagna sheets, the white sauce and meat sauce;
    10.If you’re using the optional spinach add a couple of layers as well close to the centre of the lasagna;
    11.Make sure the top layer of the lasagna is the white sauce and place your grated cheese on the top layer ready to be finished in the oven;
    12.Cook your lasagna for 45/50 minutes at 180C/360F;
    13.Serve hot. Lasagne is great with chips and/or salad.

    Oreo Cheesecake

    1 pkg. Oreo brand cookies
    70g cup melted unsalted butter
    3 pkgs. cream cheese (8 oz.)*
    180g cup granulated sugar
    4 eggs
    200g cup sour cream *
    1 tsp. vanilla extract
    Whipped cream and additional cookies for garnish
    * should be at room temperature

    1. Finely crush 25-30 of the cookies and combine with the melted butter to form bottom crust. For the bottom I scrape the cream off. The cookies used to garnish I keep the cream in, Press firmly into the bottom and up the sides of a 9 inch pan.
    2. Beat cream cheese and sugar together with electric mixer set on medium until they are creamy. Lightly beat eggs and blend in one at a time by hand. Add sour cream and vanilla and continue to blend well.
    3. Coarsely chop remaining oreos and fold into the blended batter. Pour mixture into crust in baking pan.
    4. Bake in a 350° F oven for 50-60 minutes or until firmly set. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes and remove by carefully running a knife around the outer edge.
    5. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours and serve garnished with whipped cream and half an oreo.

    Cheesy Bacon Muffins

    Preparation Time: 20 minutes
    Cooking Time: 20 minutes
    Makes 12 Muffins

    300g Self raising white flour
    1/2 tea spoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon paprika
    pinch of salt
    85g butter (diced)
    6 rashers of cold cooked bacon (chopped)
    175g mature cheddar cheese (grated)
    1 egg beaten
    250ml milk


    1. Preheat oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas mark 6. Grease each cup of a 12-cup muffin tin or line each cup with a paper muffin case. Set aside. Sift flour, baking powder, paprika and salt into a large bowl then lightly rub in the butter.
    2. Stir in the bacon and cheese, then add the beaten egg and milk. stirring gently to mix well.
    3. Spoon the mixture into the muffin cups, divided it evenly between each one.
    4. Bake the muffins for about 20 minutes, or until well risen, golden brown and firm to touch. transfer to wire rack to cool. serve warm or cold.