In trying to eliminate animal products from our diet, I have struggled some with replacing old faithful dishes with others that would be appropriate not just for everyday fare, but also in more festive situations. This vegie lasagna is pretty yummy, if I do say so myself. It is now in my permanent file of entrees.
I went to 3 stores looking for regular whole grain noodles that you have to cook, but I could only find the no-boil kind. Hmm. Must be a thing. I will look harder next time.
I first soaked I bag of raw cashews from Trader Joes for several hours.
Drain, rinse, and place in the food processor. Add about 1 c. of soy milk. (I use the kind that has soy beans and water in the ingredients! So many have a list of stuff as long as your arm.) Add onion and garlic powder enough to your taste. (Notice, I am not too specific. 🙂 ).
Blend up till smooth, adding a little liquid if needed to make a creamy texture, but not runny.
Add in 1/c nutritional yeast. This sauce is kind of cheesy tasting and good for keeping things moist.
For the cottage cheesy kind of layer, crumble a container of firm tofu and press to drain excess liquid out. Dice several leaves of fresh basil off your live plant (Everyone has one, right?). And add it in. Again add some onion and garlic powder and some salt. Pepper if you like–I don’t like.
In a frying pan, saute any vegies you like. I used mushrooms, celery, onion, collard greens, kale, chives, and green onions.
After that cooks down a little, I add bell peppers, spinach, and garlic. I went to a Pampered Chef party just to get this garlic press. It is awesome! You just put the clove in and squish. No skin, just mushed garlic.
Drain the liquid off before adding to your lasagna. So here you go with the layers: I put some organic pasta sauce down first and a layer of the noodles. I topped that with a layer of the cashew cream, then a layer of the tofu-ricotta looking stuff. Add a layer of capers here just for fun.
Another layer of noodles and pasta sauce. I also sprinkled a bit of daia vegan cheese here–the kind that does not use casein protein from milk (optional because it does add fat). Add a layer of the vegies. Another layer of noodles, then cashew, then tofu, then noodles, then vegies, the optional vegan cheese. Breathe. Then noodles, pasta sauce and vegan cheese. You get it. It’s not rocket science, and you can change up the order of the layers any way you like.
Bake in a 375 deg. oven for an hour or till it starts messing your oven by dripping down the sides of the dish!
Let sit for a 1/2 hour, and it still will not cut easily, but who cares because it tastes yummy. The next day it cuts great and makes nice leftovers! Hope you like it.