Lockdown Day 15 (Wednesday)


boiled eggs and toast
leftover chips from last night (not very nice)


Lasagne – see RECIPE below
Greens, roughly chopped and cooked in a little water with a lump of butter. Sprinkle with sea salt.

Lasagne – RECIPE

I hardly ever make meat lasagne – too many different stages and often vegetarian lasagne (eg mushroom and courgette) is so much nicer – but this was delicious. The ingredients are not complicated. I had the mince and the cheddar cheese in the freezer. This recipe tries to simplify the various steps as much as possible. But to make it even quicker you can replace the white sauce with creme fraiche, thinned with a little water, milk or cream. For discussion of other options for a more authentic lasagne, look at How to Cook the Perfect Lasagne.


For the white sauce:
500 ml milk
bay leaf (optional)
1 onion
5 cloves
50g butter
50g plain flour

For the meat sauce:
1 large onion
1 large carrot
400g beef mince
1 tin tomatoes
stock or stock powder
1/2 glass wine (optional)

about half a box of lasagne sheets
about 100g cheddar cheese


For the white sauce:
Peel the onion and push the cloves into the surface (don’t worry if they break). Put onion and bayleaf with the milk into a pan. Bring slowly to the boil, take off the heat and set aside. This infuses the milk with the flavour of the other ingredients. Now start the meat sauce.

For the meat sauce:
Finely chop the onion and carrot.
Put into a big saucepan with some olive oil. Fry over low heat 5-10 minutes til onion is soft. Add the mince and use a wooden spoon to break it up. Add the tomatoes, and stock, water and stock power, and wine if using. You want enough liquid to generously cover the meat. Put back onto a low heat and leave to simmer for 45 minutes or longer.Add more liquid if it gets too thick. You want it to be quite runny.

Now return to the white sauce:
Make the roux by melting the butter gently in a saucepan. When it’s melted, add the flour and mix well until it becomes it becomes a thick paste. Gradually add the milk – you may need a whisk to get all the lumps out, a heatproof whisk is great for this. Return to a low heat, and cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring regularly, until it thickens to the consistency of thick cream. If it goes lumpy again, take it off the heat, use the whisk to get all the lumps out, then return to the heat. When thick, remove from the heat and set aside.

Assemble the lasagne:
Preheat the oven 200C.
Great a baking dish with veg oil or butter (ceramic is best but metal will be fine too).
Put a thin layer of meat sauce on the bottom. Put a layer of lasagne sheets, overlapping to make sure the whole dish is well covered. Then layer sauce and lasagne sheets alternately. When the sauce is finished, do a final layer of lasagne sheets then do a top layer of white sauce. Cover the surface generously with grated cheese.
Cook 25-30 minutes or until a knife goes in very easily and the surface is bubbling.

Can be reheated but is best eaten on the day.

I’m starting to lose track of what day it is. Spent a while trying to get a supermarket delivery but none available. Still very sunny and had a long bike ride with the toddler. The first patients have arrived at the Nightingale hospital at the Excel centre.

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