With its glorious balance of noodle, sauce and cheese, this lasagna stew takes far less effort yet has the same soul warming texture of the regular dish. (Recipe Credit: Marc Matsumoto of Fresh Tastes.)
- 5.6 ounces bacon (finely diced)
- 12 ounces ground beef
- 9.3 ounces onion (~1 medium onion, finely diced)
- 2.1 ounces carrot (~1 small carrot, grated)
- .5 ounces garlic (~2 large cloves, minced)
- 1 cup red wine
- 28 ounce can whole tomatoes (tomatoes hand crushed)
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt (to taste)
- 1 teaspoon porcini powder
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- .5 ounces basil (~4 sprigs, chopped )
- black pepper (to taste)
- 4.7 ounces Lasagna noodles (7 sheets 6 2/3 in x 3)
- 3.5 ounces bocconcini (mini fresh mozzarella)
- Parmigiano-Reggiano (to taste)
- Add the bacon to a heavy bottomed pot and saute until the bacon is starting to brown and a good amount of fat has rendered out.
- Add the beef and saute until cooked through. Transfer the meat to a bowl using a slotted spoon and drain off all but 1 tablespoon of fat.
- Add the onions, carrot, and garlic to the pot and saute until the onions are tender and well browned.
- Add the wine to the pot and deglaze the bottom of the pot.
- When it no longer smells like alcohol, return the meat to the pot, along with the tomatoes, vegetables stock, salt, porcini powder, fennel seeds, nutmeg, basil and black pepper. Simmer for 30 minutes to an hour.
- Break the lasagna into roughly 1-inch pieces.
- Add the lasagna and cook until tender (about 10 minutes).
- If the stew cooks down and ends up too thick, you can adjust the consistency by adding some more vegetable stock or water.
- Just before you're ready to eat, add 2-3 bocconcini per serving to the pot until they soften. Serve and garnish with flat-leaf parsley and grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.