Wednesday, December 12, 2012

lasagna


Here's another cozy meal.  I was a bit unsure how to make the cheese component, but  I really loved how this turned out. There are so many things you can use to make cheese: cashews, and cauliflower, being a couple. I decided to use both, and, to throw in some white beans, just because. And for the red sauce, you could use any, even jarred. I like making my own. This way, I am able to add vegetables, which is a great way to give kids some vegetable nutrition.  I sprinkled the tempeh on top but, it would be better if it were incorporated.  I wanted it easy for Camilla to pick off. And I cut the vegetables larger than I normally would, for the same reason.

1 lb lasagna noodles, cooked al dente (put a dash of oil in the water to help the noodles from sticking)

For the white/ricotta/bechamel layer:
Into a high speed blender, or cuisinart:
1 cup steamed cauliflower
1 c cashews
1 c white beans
2 tsp white miso
2 TB fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 TB nutritional yeast
1 tsp salt, or to taste

Blend until creamy. The cauliflower helps to keep it from getting too dense. The beans add fiber and great nutrition. You may need to add a tablespoon or so of water to get the creamy texture.

For the red sauce:
1 can tomato sauce, or puree
1/4 c broccoli, chopped (you can use any vegetables, this is just what I had on hand)
14 c onion, chopped
1/4 c sliced carrot
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp maple syrup

1/4 c fresh chopped basil plus extra for garnish

Again, everything, except the basil, into a high speed blender, or cuisinart ( I didn't even wash mine out from making the cheese sauce). Puree until smooth. I used tomato puree but a tomato sauce would work better. I added a few tablespoons of water to smooth it out.

Vegetables:
1 1/2 c mushrooms
1/2 c sliced carrots
2 zucchini, chopped

Saute the vegetables in 1/4 cup water for a couple of minutes. Add the tomato sauce and simmer for 10 minutes or more, until everything is cooked through. Add the basil, and season.

For the tempeh:
1 cake of tempeh, crumbled
1 TB soy sauce
1 tsp oregano

Saute the the tempeh in a little oil, add the soy sauce and oregano, and cook until browning.

You can layer however you want, but this is how I did it:
A bit of sauce in the bottom of an 8 X 11 inch pan, noodles, cheese (spread maybe 1/4 inch thick,) noodles, red sauce, noodles, cheese, noodles, cheese, noodles, red sauce, tempeh. Sprinkle with fresh basil.
I stored in the fridge for a few hours, so you might cut down the cooking time, if this went straight into an oven.
I cooked this at 350 for 25 minutes, uncovered, then 30 minutes more, covered.


Everyone agreed, it was even better the next day. Not sure why. You could add a vegan cheese, or make one with ground cashews and nutritional yeast. I didn't, and really didn't think it needed it.

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