Amore’s Christmas Lasagna

Kidney Bean Cream Vegan Lasagna

It’s really hard not to salivate when thinking of lasagna.

Lasagna is a typical main dish for any Italian Christmas lunch, and quite typically, scrumptious, but not so typically, vegan. I will not participate in any religion or religious holiday that harms animals, so, I created a vegan lasagna. Since deciding to go vegan almost 4 years ago, Christmas lunch at my grandmother’s house has never been the same.

I’m thrilled to share this recipe with you this week. It is so delicious and in my opinion, nothing short of revolutionary! I achieved the rich, creamy flavours we love in an authentic lasagna, without any dairy whatsoever. Ricotta, a common and highly coveted ingredient in lasagna is included here in its cruelty-free version: tofu-based. The creaminess is enhanced by my creative and kind kidney bean cream. Oh, and let’s not forget the parmesan! No need to omit it in this vegan lasagna, since I created a completely dairy-free version with the versatile nut: the cashew!

There is quite a bit of work involved in preparing this dish, however, a large lasagna can easily feed up to 10 hungry people and maybe even provide leftovers! Quite a yield for a couple of hours’ investment and just think how much you will be loved once you make this feast for your family!

A few shortcuts are permitted in this recipe, while preserving its deliciousness. You can choose to make either the kidney bean cream OR tofu ricotta, instead of both. The zucchini can also be omitted without disasterous consequences.

Try this vegan lasagna this holiday season and let me know what you think! Enjoy, in joy and in health!

Amore’s Vegan Christmas Lasagna

Ingredients:

1 package eggless, whole-wheat or rice lasagna noodles (about 12 noodles)
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
4 small zucchini, chopped
4 cups mushrooms (your favorite or a combination of different mushrooms), chopped
5 cups baby spinach, chopped, stems removed
2 cups fresh parsley, chopped.
3 tablespoons olive or grapeseed oil
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
2 tablespoons unsalted steak spice
2 tablespoons dried oregano
Sea salt. chili flakes or chopped fresh hot pepper and black pepper to taste

Method:

1. Preheat oven to 350˚F.
2. Prepare tomato sauce (recipe follows).
3. Prepare vegan parmesan (recipe follows).
4. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in large frying pan over medium heat. Add garlic and sauté for 2 minutes.
5. Add mushrooms, one teaspoon sea salt, steak spice, fennel and 1 tablespoon of oregano and sauté until mushrooms are tender and most of the water has evaporated, about 7-10 minutes. Add spinach and half a teaspoon of sea salt. Continue to sauté until spinach has completely wilted, about 1-2 minutes.
6. In a separate frying pan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil and add onions. Sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add zucchini, 1 tablespoon oregano and salt. Sauté until zucchini is soft, about 6-7 minutes. Add some of the chopped parsley and stir.
7. Remove from heat and set veggies aside.
8. Prepare tofu ricotta (recipe follows) if desired and kidney bean cream (recipe follows).
9. In a large pot, add water and sea salt and bring water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles as per instructions on the box. Drain and set aside.
10. Spread one cup tomato sauce (recipe follows) in large glass or ceramic baking dish.
11. Line lasagna noodles side by side to form bottom layer. Spread some veggies, ricotta and kidney bean cream over the noodles. Add some tomato sauce and sprinkle some vegan parmesan. Repeat until last layer of lasagna is reached.
12. Over the last layer, spread remaining tomato sauce, vegan parmesan, chili flakes or chopped hot peppers (if desired) and garnish with fresh chopped parsley.
13. Cover dish with aluminum foil and bake 20 – 25 minutes.
14. Remove from oven and serve warm.

 

Easy Tomato Sauce

Ingredients:

4 cups strained tomatoes
3 tablespoons olive or grapeseed oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, diced
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
5-6 leaves fresh basil, whole
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

Method:

1. Heat oil over low heat in large pot. Add chopped onions, red pepper and garlic. Sauté over low heat for 5 minutes. Pour in crushed tomatoes and stir. Reduce heat to low.
2. Stir in all remaining ingredients and cook over low heat for 1 ½ to 2 hours. Remove bay leaf before serving.

 

Vegan Parmesan

Ingredients:

1 cup raw cashews
1 cup nutritional yeast
1 cup shelled hemp seeds

Method:

1. Blend all ingredients in a food processor until powdery.

 

Tofu Ricotta

Ingredients:

1 package firm tofu, drained and cut into quarters or crumbled
2/3 cup yellow miso
2/3 cup purified water
½ cup tahini
¼ cup olive oil
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
1 ½ teaspoon dried basil
1 ½ teaspoon dried oregano
¾ teaspoon sea salt

Method:

1. Blend all ingredients in a food processor until smooth and creamy.

 

Kidney Bean Cream

Ingredients:

2 cups kidney beans, cooked
1 ½ cups purified water
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
3 teaspoons nutritional yeast
3 teaspoons hemp seeds
1 ½ teaspoons sea salt

Method:

1. Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth and creamy.

 

“Any religion or philosophy which is not based on a respect for all life is not a true religion or philosophy.”

~Albert Schweitzer

One comment

  • Maria .. 🙂 Thank you sooo much for all you do! You are truly amazing! Love the recipes! ! Bless you for just being you! ! ::)) <3. Beautiful work!! (Cooking is more like fun) but you know :))

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