Recipes for National Cooking Programme – Week Twenty

This is the last of  session of our  National Cooking Programme which was an ‘oven-ready’ programme of x20 FREE online interactive classes for teenagers wanting to learn to cook. Here is what we’ll be cooking on Wednesday 27 October 2021 at 5.30pm which will be livestreamed on Instagram and YouTube.  Please get prepared with the ingredients and familiarise yourself with the recipe so you can cook along with us.

Shopping list

Firstly, here is a handy shopping list for all of the ingredients required:

450g/1 lb ground beef
1 carrot
1 large onion
2 sticks celery
2 large cloves garlic
olive oil
vegetable stock powder
1lb/450g tin of chopped tomatoes/passata
tomato paste
salt and pepper
plain flour
rapeseed oil
milk 750ml
ground nutmeg
Parmesan cheese grated 150g


To make lasagne, four components are required:
• A well flavoured Bolognese sauce or vegetarian Bolognese sauce
• A good bechamel sauce
• Sheets of pasta – either dried or fresh
• 150g grated Parmesan cheese to sprinkle over the top of the completed lasagne

To assemble the lasagne:
1. Spread a thin layer of Bolognese sauce on the bottom of the dish.
2. Follow this with a layer of bechamel sauce.
3. Arrange a layer of pasta over the sauces so that they are completed covered.
4. Repeat the process, starting with Bolognese sauce, then bechamel and finally pasta sheets
5. Do this until the entire dish is filled. End with a layer of bechamel.
6. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the top and bake in oven 200ºC for about ½ hour.

Bolognese Sauce


450g/1lb ground beef
1 carrot finely cubed
1 large onion chopped
2 sticks celery finely cubed
2 large cloves garlic crushed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 handful chopped parsley
1 tablespoon vegetable stock powder
1lb/450g tin of chopped tomatoes/passata
1 tablespoon tomato paste
salt and pepper to season


1. Pour the olive oil into a pan and fry the meat until brown. Do this over maximum heat
and keep stirring all the time. If the meat ‘waters’ do not worry – wait until water has
boiled off and then continue to brown.
2. Add onions and brown with meat. The browning of the meat and the onions provides the
sauce with good flavour.
3. Add the garlic and brown lightly then add the carrots and celery and blend in with the fried meat and onions. Cook together briefly.
4. Add the chopped tomatoes and puree as well as the chopped parsley and stock cube to the
pan and mix together well.
5. Fill the empty tomato tin with water and add that to the saucepan as it will thicken the sauce and give the meat a chance to cook and the sauce to thicken.
6. Bring the mixture up to the boil and then simmer for about half an hour.
7. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Bechamel Sauce


4 tablespoons flour
4 tablespoons rapeseed oil
2 cups milk (1 pint/500ml)
salt to taste
good pinch nutmeggGround black pepper
extra milk for thinning the sauce as it will thicken on standing


1. Mix the flour and oil together in a saucepan – all cold.
2. Gradually add the milk and seasoning. Do not add too quickly but take your time so that a
smooth mixture results. If lumpy at all, use a whisk to beat out any lumps so that you
have a perfectly smooth cold mixture.
3. Place saucepan over heat and stir constantly until the sauce is thickened.
4. Continue cooking for a few minutes longer to ensure that all the starch is properly cooked.
5. Use bechamel sauce as basis for cheese sauces, bechamel in lasagne or merely as topping
for any dish requiring white sauce or bechamel.
6. For some dishes the sauce may need to be thinned with additional milk.