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Lasagna alla Bolognese

From the Scotto family's Fresco restaurant
/ Source: TODAY

Servings: 6


  • 1 cup cooked, drained spinach
  • 1 quantity pasta dough
  • 1 quantity meat sauce (see Bolognese sauce recipe below)

For the béchamel sauce

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose/plain flour
  • 2 cups hot milk
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Dash of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter

DIRECTIONSSqueeze as much moisture out of the cooked spinach as possible and chop very finely.

Prepare the pasta dough, incorporating the very finely chopped spinach into the dough with the eggs. Shape the dough into a ball and set aside to rest for about 1 hour, wrapped in plastic wrap (cling film).

Prepare the meat sauce (see bolognese recipe below).

Roll the pasta dough out and cut into rectangles measuring 6 inches by 4 inches.

To prepare the béchamel sauce, melt the butter and stir in the flour.  Remove from the heat and gradually add the hot milk while stirring continuously. Return to a very low heat and continue stirring with a wooden spoon as the sauce cooks for about 5 minutes.

Bring a very large saucepan of water to a boil, then add the salt and the tablespoon of oil (to prevent the sheets of lasagna from sticking to one another). Add the lasagna and cook for 2-3 minutes.  Drain the lasagna and spread them out on clean, dry cloths to dry off for a few minutes.

Spoon a thin layer of the meat sauce over the bottom of a fairly deep, rectangular ovenproof dish and cover with a layer of lasagna. Spread with a layer of béchamel and sprinkle with Parmesan. Repeat this process until all the ingredients are used up. The top layer should be lasagna, covered with béchamel sauce and sprinkled with the remaining Parmesan.

Dot with the last measure of butter and bake in a preheated oven at 375F for 30 minutes.  Leave to stand for 5 minutes before serving.



  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 pound ground veal
  • 1/2 pound chopped pork
  • 3/4 pound mild Italian sausage
  • 6 ounces pancetta bacon, diced
  • 2 (14.5 ounce) cans whole peeled tomatoes, with liquid
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 5 teaspoons chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
  • 5 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 5 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pound fettuccini pasta
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Heat oil in a large, heavy pot over medium heat. Sauté onions, celery, carrots and garlic until tender, about 10 minutes. Increase heat to high and add veal, pork, sausage and pancetta; cook until meats are evenly brown.  Stir in tomatoes, chicken broth, milk, parsley, basil and thyme. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 2 1/2 hours; stir occasionally, breaking up tomatoes with spoon as you stir. Season with salt and pepper to taste.