Monday, September 3, 2012

Masterchef Week - Pork Lasagne

Masterchef Australia officially came to an end for 2012 the other week, and I have some serious withdrawal symptoms. For part 2 of my own Masterchef series, I really went out of my comfort zone. I don’t like lasagne. I don’t like the texture, the sloppiness of it. But maybe I’ve just never had a good one before. The husband’s been hassling me for weeks to make him lasagne so I finally relented (and I desperately wanted to try this Masterchef one) and made him Audra's Pork Lasagne. This lasagne featured on one of the Italian challenges in the last week’s of Masterchef when they had to cook lunch for 500 Barilla contestants and the owner of Barilla loved it.

What you will need:
250g Box Lasagne Sheets
250g Grated Parmesan Cheese

What you will need Meat Sauce:
50ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil
500g Rindless Pork Belly, sliced into 2cm strips (ask the butcher to cut the rind off if you need to)
600g Italian Pork Sausages, skins removed
3 Cloves Garlic, finely chopped
6 Eschalots, finely chopped
800g Tinned Tomatoes (I used tinned whole tomatoes)
2 Sprigs Fresh Thyme

Preheat your oven to 180°C.

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat. 

Pork Belly

 Cook the pork belly, in batches until caramelised.  

Caramelised pork belly
Remove from pan. Break the sausage meat into small pieces, and add to the hot pan and cook, stirring until it changes colour. 
Italian sausage meat
 Return the pork belly to the pan, add the garlic, eschalots and cook for 5 minutes. 
Pork belly returned to pan

Add tomatoes and thyme and cook, stirring occasionally for 45 minutes or until sauce thickens. 
Everything in the pan 
Remove pork belly pieces and pass through a mincer, or chop finely.

Pork Belly being minced
 Return to pan, season and cook for a further 10 minutes.

Pork Belly returned to pan

What you will need Bechamel Sauce:
1 Litre Milk
2 Sage leaves
1 small bunch fresh Oregano, leaves picked
2 Cloves Garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon Black Peppercorns
80g Butter, cubed
80g Plain Flour

Heat the milk with sage, oregano, garlic and peppercorns in a large saucepan until simmering.

Bechamel sauce ingredients to simmer
In a separate saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring for 3 minutes, reduce heat to low and cook a further 5 minutes to cook out the flour. 

Butter and flour in separate pan
Remove the pan from the heat, strain the milk through a sieve into a jug and pour into the pan, whisking constantly to prevent lumps forming. 
Return to the heat, season with salt and cook for 10 minutes or until the sauce thickens slightly.

Sauce thickening
To assemble the lasagne, lightly oil a 12-cup capacity rectangular baking dish. 

Greased pan 
Ladle a little meat sauce over the base of the dish.
Layer of meat
Cover with one layer of pasta sheets, breaking to fit if necessary. 

Layer of lasagne sheets
Top with one-third of remaining meat sauce and one-third bechamel sauce.
Layer of b├ęchamel sauce & repeat
Repeat the layers twice, finishing with bechamel sauce. Sprinkle with parmesan.
Ready for the oven 
Bake for 30-40 minutes or until pasta is cooked. 
Fresh from the oven 
Set aside for 15 minutes before serving.
Pork Lasagne

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  1. Hi there. Food on Friday this time is all about sausages! So it would be great if you linked this in. This is the link . Have a good week.

  2. Thanks for the invite Carole, I have made the visit and linked up

  3. Thanks for linking this super sausage post in to Food on Friday. I am now signed up to follow you. A follow back to Carole's Chatter would be wonderful – or are you already following? Cheers