Lasagna: The 1967 Time-Life Recipe | Riding the Catskills

1968 time life the cooking of italy lasagna recipe

Still riding! I have a new dog, so my exercise time has leaned more towards hiking and running. She has a lot of energy.

This is the magic lasagna recipe from the 1967 edition of “The Cuisine of Italy”. I read over and over again on cooking sites that this was the best lasagna of all time, but as far as I know, this is the first time it has appeared online as I haven’t been able to find it anywhere else.

So I went to Abe Books and bought the ’67 book, scanned it, the text recognized it, and here it is. The book has been out of print for a long time, so I hope the lasagna copyright Nazis won’t go after me for this.

It’s the most amazing thing you’ll ever eat. I mean, come on, chicken liver, smoked ham, round ground and ground pork?

You are welcome in advance. If you have modifications or additional guidance, feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.


  1. I suggest going much lighter on chicken liver; as the recipe is written below, you’ll end up with what basically amounts to liver lasagna. Cut it in half or even a quarter.
  2. This is not enough for a conventional 2017 lasagna pan. Duplicate the recipe if you want to use a regular-sized Pyrex.

12/30/2019-I added some headings to make the original recipe, which was misspelled, less confusing. Also, you might want to read the reviews first before diving in, there is a good orientation of cooks much better than me.

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Ragu Bolognese To make about 2 1/2 cups 1/4 pound smoked ham, coarsely chopped (about 1 cup) 1 cup coarsely chopped onions 1/4 cup coarsely chopped

carrots 1/2 cup coarsely chopped celery 4 tablespoons butter 2 tablespoons olive oil 3/4 pound round steak, ground twice 1/4 pound lean pork, ground twice 1/2 cup dry white wine 2 cups beef broth, fresh or canned 2 tablespoons tomato paste 1/2 pound chicken livers 1 cup heavy cream A pinch of ground nutmeg Salt Freshly ground black pepper

Combine chopped ham, onions, carrots and celery on a cutting board, and cut them together into very small pieces. (This mixture is called battuto, which when cooked becomes a soffritto.)

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter over moderate heat in a 10- to 12-inch heavy skillet. When the foam subsides, add the battuto and cook, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Using a rubber spatula, transfer the soffritto to a 3- to 4-quart heavy saucepan. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in the same pan, and lightly brown the ground round steak and pork over moderate heat, stirring the meat constantly to break any lumps. Then pour the wine, increase the heat and boil vigorously, still stirring constantly, until almost all the liquid in the pan has been cooked. Add the meat to the soffritto in the saucepan and add the broth and tomato paste. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, over high heat melt 2 more tablespoons of butter in the original pan, and when the foam subsides, add the chicken livers. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until firm and lightly browned. Chop the chicken livers into small cubes, reserve them and add them to the sauce 10 minutes before it is ready. A few minutes before serving, add the cream and let it heat up. Try the ragout and season with nutmeg, salt and pepper. Serve the ragout over pasta or, without the cream, use it in lasagna pasticciate.

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of lasagna To serve 6 to 8

LASAÑA 6 to 8 quarts of water 1 tablespoon of salt 1/2 pound of lasagna

Preheat oven to 350°. Generously apply butter to the bottom and sides of a 9-by-12-by-3-inch baking pan or baking dish. In a large pot or soup kettle, bring the water and salt to a boiling boil over high heat. Add the lasagna, stirring gently for a few moments with a wooden fork to make sure the strips don’t stick together. Boil over high heat, stirring occasionally, until the lasagna is tender, but still al dente, the time can vary between 10 and 25 minutes, depending on whether you use homemade or commercial lasagna. Place the pot under cold running water for a few moments to cool the pasta. Then lift the strips and spread them side by side on slippery paper towels.

BESCIAMELLA FOR LASAGNA 3 tablespoons butter 6 tablespoons flour 2 cups milk 1 cup heavy cream A pinch of ground nutmeg 1 teaspoon salt

In a heavy saucepan of 2 to 3 quarts, melt the butter over moderate heat and add the flour. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the milk and cream at once, beating with a wire whisk until the flour partially dissolves. Put the pan back on high heat and cook, stirring constantly with the rods. When the sauce boils and thickens into a soft cream, reduce the heat and simmer, still stirring, for 2 or 3 minutes. Remove from heat and season with nutmeg and salt.

LASAGNA ASSEMBLYBesciamellaThe 2 1/2 cups of ragout Bolognese you made earlier 1/2 cup freshly grated imported Parmesan cheese Lasagna noodles

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Spread a layer of ragout about 1/4 inch deep evenly over the bottom of the buttered casserole. Spread about 1 cup of besciamella over it. Place a third of the lasagna on the besciamella, slightly overlapping the strips. Repeat the layers of ragu, besciamella and lasagna two more times, then cover with the rest of the ragout and a besciamella masking. Sprinkle with grated cheese. Bake 30 minutes, or until sauce is bubbly.

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