So for Valentine’s day, I wanted to cook up something special. And what’s more special than lasagne!? I’ve been looking forward to experimenting with plant based alternatives of my favourite foods – especially pizza which I haven’t gotten around to doing yet. So far, I’ve made my regular pizza plant-based by skipping the cheese and leaving everything else the same which works quite well. But when I have some more time, I am excited to try healthy homemade cheese alternatives on pizza. As a part of my new diet, I am eliminating processed food along with dairy. I feel that a vegan diet is not worth the trouble if you are only eliminating dairy and still consuming processed food if you look at it from a health perspective (which is my perspective). So, my objective is to completely eliminate (or minimize as much as possible), processed foods, dairy and refined sugar. It’s working pretty well so far (aside from some minor exceptions here and there :)). So back to lasagne. On Saturday, I started looking up recipes to cook something special for valentine’s day and I came across plant based lasagne. That captivated my attention right away.
Here is the link to the recipe from where I got my recipe inspiration from:
THE ULTIMATE VEGETABLE VEGAN LASAGNA from The Simple Veganista
Below you will find my minor variations. When I cook, I cook a LOT. I like to feed a lot of people because than it’s really worth all the effort (and mess!). I know most people, when following a recipe are not looking to cook a lot so I will reduce the recipe to 1/3 of what I cooked yesterday (3 trays) – to give the ingredients for 1 tray.
My Version of The Ultimate Vegetable Vegan Lasagne (makes 6 servings)
- 3 bell peppers (any mix of colours – I like one of each – green, orange, yellow or red)
- 2 medium zucchini’s
- 1/3 pack (24 oz/680 g pack) of white mushrooms (can add some more if you like) (purchased from Costco)
- 2 medium red onions
- 1/3 pack (220 g pack) of Nutrela soya granules (can be purchased from any indian grocery store)
- 2/3 of 880 ml jar simply natural organic tomato basil pasta sauce (purchased from Costco)
- 1 and 1/3 cup of cashew ricotta cheese
- 1/3 pack (1/3 of a 16 oz/454g pack) of organic baby spinach
- 1/3 cup of almond parmesan (for sprinkling on top after cooking)
- 9 sheets Compliments lasagna sheets (I used 12 sheets in 1 tray but I much rather prefer less ‘wheat’ and more vegetables so my future approach would be to use 9 sheets and more vegetables in the layers which this version of the recipe accounts for)
- Chop and prepare all the ingredients.
- Prepare the cashew ricotta and almond parmesan (I shared the links to the original recipes from The Simple Veganista beacuse I used the exact same recipe)
- At the same time boil water and add in lasagne as per the box instructions. I like to throw in a spoon of salt and a dash of olive oil.
- Heat some olive oil in a large pan.
- Add onion and cook for a couple minutes.
- Add bell peppers and zucchini and cook for another couple minutes.
- Add mushrooms and cook for a couple minutes.
- A lot of water will release, and thats when you add in the soya granules. They soak up the water.
- Than add in the pasta sauce (save about 1/4 cup for the last layer of lasagne)
- Add seasonings as you wish (I add salt, italiano, parsley, chilli flakes, paprika)
- Turn off stove and by this time (or earlier) the pasta should also be done. Drain the pasta.
- Start layering your tray. The first layer is a little bit of the vegetable and sauce mixture. 2nd layer lasagne sheets (3 lasagne sheets per layer). 3rd layer vegetable and sauce mixture. 4th layer cashew ricotta. Then repeat layers 2-4. Then repeat layer 2-3. Add the extra pasta sauce we saved to the top layer as we will bake with this layer.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes at 400 degrees.
- After baking, sprinkle the almond parmesan evenly through the whole lasagne.
- Wait for it to cook before cutting into 12 pieces.
- Serve and enjoy!