Can I Still Cook Like a Top Chef: Lasagna

This week’s episode of Top Chef Canada was all about soul food. Cooking with love almost always makes the dish taste better. Winner of Top Chef Masters Marcus Samuelsson was the guest judge, which is pretty high profile for a Canadian show. Also season one winner, Dale, showed up with his adorable son, Ayden for the quick fire. The preview of Trista crying last week, makes a lot more sense, seeing how she left the plastic wrap on her chicken, and Marcus Samuelsson got it. I would probably be crying too.

David “the risk taker” won with his cabbage roll dish, Trista got sent home with her saran wrap chicken. I really felt for her, while it was an amateur mistake, it’s one anyone could have made while under pressure.

My soul food is definitely lasagna, and my mom’s was the best. It was always a whole day thing, after she walked us to school, she would get started making the noodles. By the time we got home from school at 3:30 we could smell the Bolognese sauce simmering on the stove. And by 6 dinner was served, with a side of freshly grated parmesan cheese.

½ lbs ground veal
½ lbs ground beef
2 large cloves garlic
3 tomatoes
1 bunch of basil
2 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp ground thyme
800 ml canned plum tomatoes
150 ml tomato paste
300 g mozzarella cheese, grated
150 g Emmental cheese, grated
200 g parmesan cheese, grated
Pre-cooked lasagna noodles
salt and pepper to taste

1. Dice tomatoes, mince basil, combine in bowl and set aside.
2. Mince garlic and sauté on medium heat.
3. Add found beef and veal, season with thyme, and onion powder
4. Once the ground meat is cooked, add the diced tomatoes and the canned whole tomatoes, along with the juice from the can.
5. Simmer for 40 minutes
6. In the meantime, grate the cheeses and mix them together in a bowl
7. Preheat the oven to 375 F
8. Place some sauce on the bottom of a 12 by 8 inch deep dish pan. Place noodles over the sauce on the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle half of the grated cheeses over the noodles. Spread Bolognese sauce over the cheese layer. Repeat twice.
9. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and place in the oven for 40 minutes
10. Remove aluminum foil from pan and return to oven for 15 minutes
11. Plate and enjoy!

The Results:
This dish definitely made me feel nostalgic.The veal added another element of flavour to the dish and the chopped tomatoes added an extra texture. (Thanks to Z, for the tomato suggestion)

As for next week’s episode, with Top Chef Canada’s crappy editing skills, we know it’s either David or Xavier who gets sent home with the high stakes quick fire challenge. This has happened before *cough Top Chef Masters *cough. You’d think the Top Chef family would learn from their past mistakes.


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