This week I am trying out more recipes from The Vegan Table. The Vegan Table is a great recipe book for people who are transitioning to a vegan diet. It is also a great place to find recipes for entertaining or when you are craving "comfort foods", but don't want all the extra fat that normally comes with them.
I have made more elaborate versions of vegan lasagna but I wanted to try this one because it doesn't require chopping a massive quantity of veggies. It's almost a dump and bake kind of recipe! It took less than 10 minutes to assemble after the noodles were boiled. Then it's 45 minutes in the oven. Pair it with a big green salad and you have more than enough food to serve 8-10 people. You can also make this into a "Stuffed Shells" recipe!
Here's the Tofu Ricotta. So simple to make. I ALWAYS use SproutTofu by WildWood. It has a creamy, mild flavor that works really well as a ricotta substitute. You can also blend in cashew nuts for more flavor, though it adds extra fat. I noticed recently that Nasoya has come out with a Sprouted Tofu, but I haven't tried it yet.
I used Daiya Vegan Cheese shreds on top. When I entertain, I like to use cheese substitutes so that friends and family can see how easy it is to substitute. Daiya and Follow Your Heart make some of the best cheese substitutes.
Here it is on the plate!
And here is the recipe straight from the book!
8 to 10
1/2 to 1 pound (225 to 455 g) lasagna noodles
2 packages (10 ounces, or 280 g, each) frozen, chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1 package (16 ounces, or 455 g) firm tofu (not silken)
1 tablespoon (13 g) granulated sugar (optional)
1/4 cup (60 ml) nondairy milk (such as rice, oat, soy, almond, or hazelnut), or as needed
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or 2 peeled garlic cloves
Juice from 1/2 lemon (about 2 tablespoons [30 ml])
2 tablespoons (5 g) minced fresh basil (about 20 leaves)
1 teaspoon (6 g) salt (or to taste)
4 to 6 cups (980 to 1470 g) tomato or pasta sauce of your choice
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F; (180 degrees C, or gas mark 4).
Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions or use "no-boil" lasagna noodles. Drain and set aside.
Squeeze as much water from spinach as possible and set aside. (If using fresh spinach, blanch first.)
Place tofu, sugar (if using), milk, garlic powder, lemon juice, basil and salt in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. The tofu "ricotta" should be creamy but still have body.
Transfer to large-size bowl, and stir in spinach. Continue tasting until you get amount of salt just right.
Cover bottom of 9 x 13-inch (23 x 33 cm) baking dish with a thin layer of tomato sauce, then a layer of noodles (use about one-third of noodles). Follow with half the tofu filling. Continue in the same order, using half the remaining tomato sauce and noodles, and all remaining tofu filling. End with remaining noodles, covered by remaining tomato sauce. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until hot and bubbling.
SERVING SUGGESTIONS AND VARIATIONS
Add meatless meat crumbles to your tomato sauce for more texture and body. For more cheesiness, add shredded nondairy mozzarella cheese to each layer.
This recipe is also great for making stuffed shells. To do so, stuff pasta shells with the tofu ricotta from this recipe, place them in a baking dish, pour on tomato sauce and bake in a 350 degrees F (180 degrees C, or gas mark 4) oven for 20 to 30 minutes.