Goat meat from the belly is delicate in flavour and when cooked gently has a beautiful, tender unctuousness that works perfectly in this light lasagne. The elements are all cooked separately and combined at the last moment, giving you a dish with bright clean flavours.

Serves
4-6

Preparation

20min

Cooking

2hr
45min

Skill level

Easy
By
Average: 4.2 (13 votes)
Yum

Ingredients

  • 2 medium brown onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 800 g goat belly, cut into 8 cm square-ish chunks
  • 200 ml white wine
  • 500 ml chicken stock
  • 4 pasta sheets, each sheet enough for a single layer in a baking dish approximately 20 cm x 30 cm, or equivalent smaller sheets
  • 200 g ricotta
  • 100 g parmesan, finely grated
  • 50 g mascarpone
  • 1½ cups podded peas, lightly blanched
  • 150 g iceberg, cut into thick strips
  • olive oil for cooking
  • river salt and white pepper

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

Place a large pot over a medium heat to warm before adding a healthy splash of olive oil. Add in the onions and garlic and give them a few stirs before adding in the herbs and some seasoning. Continue cooking and stirring for 5 minutes or so or until the onions have softened nicely. 

Raise the heat a little and add in the goat meat. Stir it around for another few minutes and then add in the wine. Give the wine a moment or two to sizzle away before adding in the stock. Make sure there is enough liquid to just cover the meat; if not add a little more water. 

Continue stirring a little until the mix comes to the boil. At this stage turn the heat to a simmer, cover the top of the mix with some baking paper and leave it to gently cook away undisturbed for just over 2 hours. 

While this is going on, blanch your lasagne sheets one by one in boiling salted water before placing them in a bowl of iced water to cool. 

Once they have cooled, drain the sheets and lay them out flat between sheets of fresh Chux or tea towels to allow them to dry a little. Set them aside in their layers.

Test your goat, you want it to be at the point where it will break apart with just a little encouragement. Once you have reached this stage remove the goat from the heat. 

Strain the ragu mix through a colander into a bowl. Place the reserved strained liquor into a pot, put on a gentle heat on the stove and let it slowly reduce by half.

Preheat the oven to 180°C . 

Mix together the ricotta, parmesan and mascarpone until it becomes almost completely smooth.

Go through the pieces of goat meat and shred into slightly smaller pieces, discarding any bits that haven’t broken down. Find the bay leaves and discard them too. Be careful though as the goat will be hot. Don’t be afraid to give it some time to cool a little. 

Once your goat is nicely shredded into a bowl, add in the peas and iceberg and give it a mix. Taste for seasoning.

To construct the lasagne take the first sheet of pasta, lay it on the bottom of your baking tray and spread over a quarter of your cheese mix. Strew a third of the goat mix over the top of this before topping with another sheet of pasta. Repeat this twice more but pause before you add the last sheet of pasta.

Spoon a few large kitchen spoons of your reducing goat braising liquor over before adding the final sheet. Use your hands to press this last sheet down, the liquid should not be sitting over the top but everything should be feeling a little squishy. Top the final layer of pasta with the last of the ricotta mix. 

Place the lasagne in the oven and cook for 15–20 minutes or until it’s starting to look golden on the top.

Remove the lasagne from the oven and cut into pieces to serve, finishing with a nice amount of the reduced braising liquor as the sauce. 

 

Cook’s tips

• Goat belly is not really that common but you should be able to order it from a good butcher. If that proves too difficult you can substitute with shoulder but it may take a little longer to cook.

• This recipe can be easily be broken down into stages. If you wish to braise the goat before you are ready to use it just make sure you let them meat cool in the liquor to room temperature before placing in the fridge. The goat can be cooked up to three days ahead. The actual construction of the lasagne can also be done a day or so in advance.

 

Photography by Sharyn Cairns. Styling by Lee Blaylock. Food preparation by Peta Gray. Creative concept by Lou Fay.

 

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This recipe is part of The Seasonal Cook: Goat columnView previous The Seasonal Cook columns and recipes.