Everything You Need to Make Lasagna
Lasagna takes some time and effort to make but the results are well worth the work. It's everything you want in a pasta dish: the saucy ground meat, creamy cheese, and pasta noodles make up the signature layers of the lasagna.
Lasagna has everything you want, but it's also good to know that it doesn't have to be too complicated. Scour your kitchen cupboards for ingredients and you'll see that you may have all the ingredients you need already with one exception: the lasagna noodles. It's quite an essential element of the dish but if you think ahead, it's an ingredient that you can store and have at the ready for that special day when you want to surprise friends and family with a dish that's sure to be a favorite.
Here are the ingredients you'll need to make that lasagna:
1 Lasagna noodles
You can't make a true lasagna without lasagna noodles. The sheets are important in creating those precise layers of meat and creamy cheese sauce that only the lasagna noodles can create. Without this essential ingredient that it's named for, it's just a baked pasta dish, so make sure you have this pasta ready before you start.
2 Ground Meat
The other all-important ingredient in the classic lasagna is the ground meat. Whether it's ground beef, pork, chicken, or finely chopped mushrooms, carrots, and tofu as the substitute for the meat, it's what makes up most of the filling of the lasagna layers.
3 Diced Tomatoes
The ground meat is cooked in a Bolognese-style tomato sauce, so it's not a pasta sauce without the tomatoes. Use pre-seasoned tomatoes with Italian herbs like we do for a classic-tasting pasta sauce without the need for additional ingredients or opt to use your favorite tomato-based spaghetti sauce to cut down prep time.
4 Garlic and Onions
No Pinoy kitchen is without these two essential aromatics since practically every dish needs one or both ingredients. Finely chop these two to add to the flavor of the ground meat. Use as little or as much as desired, but a medium onion and 2 cloves of garlic are the standard.
5 Quick-Melting Cheese
Another Pinoy favorite ingredient, the quick-melting cheese is the first of two creamy components of the lasagna. The grated cheese is scattered liberally throughout the layers where it easily melts and mixes with the tomato-beef sauce once cooked. Mix it up with mozzarella on top to create gooey, stretchy strands while it's still hot.
6 Fresh milk
The classic lasagna has a distinct béchamel sauce layer, a thick milk-based sauce firm enough to create one layer. It's a creamy, milky break from the tang of the pasta sauce that when heated, easily melts in your mouth.
7 All-Purpose Flour
The béchamel doesn't thicken on its own. With the help of this ingredient and a little cooking oil, the béchamel not only becomes a homogenous mixture when heated up, it becomes thick enough to stand on its own. Add a pinch of ground nutmeg or even ground cinnamon to give your béchamel a unique flavor all its own.
8 Salt and Ground Pepper
No dish can survive a tasting without these two important seasonings. Salt and pepper is the dynamic duo that not only enhances the flavors it comes into contact with, it elevates the umami flavor that's present in the other ingredients.
It's not hard to keep your kitchen stocked with the easily accessible ingredients of this delicious pasta meal. Exert a little effort to satisfy the hearts (and the tummies!) of your friends and family with this family favorite meal.