‘Breakfast’, ‘lunch’, ‘dinner’ – why do we have to have so many labels for things? This lasagne laughs in the face of outmoded ideas of categorisation and is equally awesome eaten at any time of day or night.

Serves
6

Preparation

30min

Cooking

1hr

Skill level

Easy
By
Average: 3.6 (42 votes)
Yum

Ingredients

  • 300 g (10½ oz) rindless loin (back) bacon, cut into 1.5 cm (½ in) strips
  • 1 leek, pale part only, thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tbsp chopped herbs (such as thyme, oregano, parsley), plus extra to garnish
  • 375 g (13 oz) fresh lasagne sheets
  • 9 large free-range eggs
  • 200 g (7 oz) bocconcini, sliced
  • 75 g (2¾ oz/¾ cups) grated parmesan

Cheesy béchamel sauce

  • 1 small onion
  • 6 cloves
  • 750 ml (25½ fl oz/3 cups) full-cream (whole) milk
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 50 g (1¾ oz) unsalted butter
  • 50 g (1¾ oz/⅓ cup) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 75 g (2¾ oz/¾ cups) grated parmesan

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 160°C/320°F (fan-forced). Lightly grease a 2 litre (68 fl oz/8 cup) baking dish.

To make the béchamel sauce, stud the onion with the cloves, then place in a saucepan with the milk and the bay leaf. Bring the milk just to the boil over medium heat then set aside to infuse for 10 minutes. Strain into a jug, discarding the onion and bay leaf. Melt the butter in a clean saucepan over a medium-low heat. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring, for 2–3 minutes until the mixture bubbles and dries out slightly. Add the milk gradually, whisking until the sauce comes to the boil and is thick and smooth. Remove from the heat. Season well with salt and pepper, stir in the parmesan and mix until combined. Cover the surface with some plastic wrap or baking paper to prevent a skin from forming and set aside until needed.

Meanwhile, put the bacon in a large, cold, heavy-based frying pan and cook, stirring, over medium-high heat for 6–8 minutes until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Add the leek and garlic to the pan, reduce the heat and cook, stirring, for 4–5 minutes until tender. Remove from the heat, return the bacon to the pan, stir in the herbs and set aside.

Spread a spoonful of the cheesy sauce over the base of the prepared baking dish. Top with one layer of the lasagne sheets, then one-quarter of the remaining sauce. Make three indents in the cheese sauce and crack in three of the eggs. Sprinkle with one-third each of the bacon mixture and bocconcini, then repeat twice. Finish with a layer of lasagne sheets and the remaining cheese sauce and the parmesan. Bake for 35–40 minutes until the pasta is tender and the top is golden brown.

Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh herbs.

 

Recipes and images from The Little Bacon Cookbook by Jack Campbell (Smith Street Books, $29.99, hbk).

View our Readable feasts review and more recipes from the book here.