Bill Granger is a self taught cook with restaurants in Sydney, London and Japan. His approach to cooking is relaxed and simple and simply delicious. His latest cookbook, his eleventh, is out in August with Harper Collins and in the lead up we thought we would share with you some of his Italian recipes. Bill’s Italian Food contains more than 100 Italian inspired recipes that are big on flavour and small on ingredients so be sure to check them out.
By the time I’ve bolognesed, béchameled and layered, I find traditional lasagne requires an entire Sunday afternoon to complete. I love the whole process when I’m in the mood, but I’m also a fan of the short cut – and this is a short cut that, I think, surpasses the original. The flavours are inspired by ham and artichoke pizza. You could use thin slices of prosciutto crudo here (such as Parma ham or San Daniele), but I prefer cooked ham (sold as ‘prosciutto cotto’ in Italy). – Bill Granger
Artichoke and Ham Lasagne
680ml bottle passata
315g fresh lasagne sheets
220g sliced good-quality cooked ham
3 x 125g balls mozzarella cheese, torn
3 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese
400g good-quality artichokes in olive oil, drained and halved
- Preheat the oven to 200°C.
- To assemble the lasagne, season the passata with sea salt and spoon a small amount into the base of a 20cm x 30cm ovenproof dish.
- Cover with a layer of lasagne sheets, quickly dipping the sheets in a bowl of cold water first before using them.
- Spoon over one-third of the remaining passata, then half the ham slices, 1 of the mozzarellas and 1 tablespoon parmesan.
- Cover with another layer of dipped lasagne sheets then top with half the remaining passata, all the ham, 1 mozzarella and 1 tablespoon parmesan.
- Add the final layer of lasagne sheets.
- Scatter the artichokes over the top and spoon over the last of the passata, mozzarella and parmesan.
- Bake for 30 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbling and golden.
Recipe taken from Bill’s Italian Food by Bill Granger, published by HarperCollins, RRP $49.99
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