I’m always stretching my rice cooker‘s abilities by treating it as an oven and seeing how well it performs. Most recently, I decided to embark on a true Test Kitchen voyage and try a lasagna. Lasagna is a dish that traditionally gets its gooey goodness and crispy top layer of melted cheese from an oven. In order to accomplish the two aforementioned characteristics I had to do some creative try outs.
The end result is an amazing melt-in-your-mouth lasagna with a crispy layer of cheese on the bottom, yes the bottom. To achieve a baked crust I had to do a topsy-turvy version and turn the dish upside down. To serve it I simply inverted each piece onto a plate, a pretty clever cover up if I do say so myself :). The best thing about cooking the lasagna in the rice cooker is the fact that I can leave it ready on Keep-Warm without worrying about coming back to a dried out lasagna. The inner pot seals in moisture and heat and the dish was still perfect for my husband who came home two hours after we had eaten.
For the white sauce:
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
4 cups whole milk
1/2 Parmesan cheese, grated
1/4 tsp nutmeg
For the lasagna:
2 cups meat sauce
10 lasagna sheets, uncooked
10 oz ricotta cheese
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
3/4 cup mozzarella cheese, grated
1 tsp olive oil
For the white sauce: Using Sauté-Then-Simmer, melt the butter and add flour to form a thick paste. Let cook for 2 minutes or until bubbles form. Slowly add the milk and whisk as you go. Let the sauce cook until it thickens. Add cheese and nutmeg, transfer to a bowl and set aside.
To assemble the lasagna: Coat your inner pot with olive oil. Sprinkle 1/4 cup mozzarella and Parmesan cheese on top. Add 1/2 cup of white sauce on top of cheese. Layer with 1/2 cup of meat sauce and a third of the ricotta cheese and top with two lasagna sheets, broken in half to make sure all sauce and cheese are covered. Repeat each layer 3 or 4 more times. Top the last layer with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
Close the lid and set to Sauté-Then-Simmer. Let cook until the rice cooker beeps, 45 min or so. Let lasagna sit and rest for an additional 15 minutes before serving.
To serve cut into wedges and invert on a plate.
Over to You
What’s your version of lasagna? Share and inspire us!