Lasagna – The speciality in Bologna, Italy

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With many Italian people, lasagna (or lasagne in Italian) is one of the world’s oldest pasta recipes. This is a traditional Italian comfort food made by alternating layers of pasta sheets, meat, sauce, and cheese.

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Overview

Lasagna Bolognese is a hearty Italian classic recipe with layers of fresh pasta, Bolognese sauce, bechamel sauce and Parmesan cheese. Perfect for feeding a crowd or freezing.

Parmesan cheese

Lasagne are wide, flat-shaped pasta, and possibly one of the oldest types of pasta. The word “lasagne”, and, in many non-Italian languages, the singular “lasagna”, can also refer to a dish made with several layers of lasagne sheets alternated with sauces and various other ingredients.

Although there are countless ways to prepare Garfield’s favorite food, the most popular variation remains the classic Lasagne alla Bolognese, made with ragù (meat based Bolognese sauce), Béchamel sauce, and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Lasagne Napoletana, on the other hand, contains meatballs, sausage, as well as ricotta and mozzarella cheese instead of Béchamel sauce, and is usually served in Naples during the Carnivale.

Béchamel sauce

There is some dispute as to whether it was invented during the Middle Ages in Naples or its origins can be traced way back to Ancient Greece, but one thing’s for sure, lasagna is one of the most delicious baked dishes Italy has to offer.

History

Lasagne originated in Italy, traditionally ascribed to the city of Naples (Campania), where the first modern recipe was created in the Middle Ages and published in Liber de Coquina (The Book of Cookery), and became a traditional dish.Traditional lasagne is made by interleaving layers of pasta with layers of sauce, made with ragù, bechamel, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and chopped hard boiled eggs. In other regions and outside of Italy it is common to find lasagne made with ricotta or mozzarella cheese, tomato sauce, various meats (e.g., ground beef, pork or chicken), miscellaneous vegetables (e.g., spinach, zucchini, olives, mushrooms), and typically flavored with wine, garlic, onion, and oregano. In all cases, the lasagne are oven-baked.

Traditionally, pasta dough prepared in Southern Italy used semolina and water and in the northern regions, where semolina was not available, flour and eggs. Today in Italy, since the only type of wheat allowed for commercially sold pasta is durum wheat, commercial lasagne are made of semolina (from durum wheat).

Emilia-Romagna’s intensive farming economy in the northern region of Italy results in plentiful dairy and meat products, and their commonality in regional cooking – more so than the olive oil found in southern regions of Italy. Pastas from Emilia-Romagna and its capital, Bologna, are almost always served with a ragù, a thick sauce made from ingredients such as onions, carrots, finely ground pork and beef, celery, butter, and tomatoes.

Bologna

In this hearty lasagna, an herbed ricotta mixture and Bolognese sauce, thick with ground sirloin and veal, are layered with noodles and baked. This lasagna was designed for a deep-dish baking pan. You can use a standard nine-by-thirteen-inch baking pan, but you will have extra sauce.