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Deconstructed Lasagna


  • Salt and pepper

  • 1 pound long fusilli or mafalda pasta

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)

  • 1 pound ground beef sirloin

  • 1 small carrot, grated or finely chopped

  • 1 small onion, grated or finely chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or finely chopped

  • 1 cup beef broth

  • One can crushed tomatoes (28 ounces)

  • A few leaves of basil, torn

  • 1 cup fresh ricotta cheese

  • 1/3 cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley (a generous handful)

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 2/3 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (a couple of generous handfuls), plus more to pass around the table


Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain.

While the pasta is working, in a large skillet, heat the EVOO, 2 turns of the pan, over medium heat. Add the beef, crumbling it into bits, and cook until lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the carrot, onion and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook until the vegetables are softened, 5 minutes. Stir in the beef broth, then the tomatoes and basil; simmer.

In a small bowl, stir together the ricotta and parsley.

Toss the pasta with the butter, then stir in the Parmigiano Reggiano and meat sauce. Scoop the ricotta mixture into each of 4 shallow bowls, then top with the meaty pasta. Pass more parmigiano-reggiano around the table.