For a change of pace to a Sunday roast – why not try one of our favourite meat free lasagnes? We are still on the hunt to find our all time favourite lasagne recipes – but this one would easily make our shortlist. The other great thing about this dish is that, for a vegetable lasagne, it is not made up of 100s of different ingredients. But please be warned, it is not a quick one to make so perfect for some weekend cooking (and of course you can cook up a batch for mid week leftovers!). We have adapted this from trying out the tasty recipe appearing in the Guardian.
1. Start by setting your oven to 200C (180C Fan, 400F, Gas Mark 6) and get your Lasagne ingredients together
◊ 3 aubergines (eggplants)
◊ 2 red peppers
◊50g chopped nuts (feel free to use any you have, although pine nuts are prob the best)
◊ olive oil (or use a garlic infused oil if you have one handy)
◊ 3 garlic cloves, crushed
◊ 2 x 400g cans of chopped tomatoes
◊ Slug of balsamic vinegar
◊ 250g each of cottage and mascapone (or use 500g ricotta)
◊ 75g pecorino romana (or parmesan or a vegetarian alternative), finely grated
◊ 9 – 12 dried lasagne sheets or 6 fresh ones
◊ Some basil leaves (to put in between the layers)
2. Prep the Lasagne aubergines and peppers by placing them on a baking sheet (having pricked the eggplants with a fork) and roast for 45 minutes
3. When the Lasagne roasted veggies have cooled, scoop out the flesh of the aubergines and mash up any big bits. Take the skin off the peppers, remove their seeds and finely chop the flesh, then add to the aubergine.
4. Heat up a fry pan with your oil and add the garlic – after a couple of minutes add the eggplant and pepper mix and cook for about 10 minutes. Don’t just leave it – give it a good stir and you should get a good thick mixture. Then add the chopped tomatoes and balsamic vinegar – cook for about another 10 minutes. Add some S&P.
5. Mix the Lasagne cheese mix with the nuts and about 50g of the pecorino. Season with S&P.
6. Now to the Lasagne assembly! Spread a 1/3 of the eggplant / pepper mixture in the base of a shallow oven dish (about 30cm x 20cm) and top with a few basil leaves and a layer of lasagne sheets. Spread with just under a 1/3 of the white sauce cheese mixture and add another 1/3 of the vegetable mixture, and some more basil. Repeat this layer (which cheese sauce mix, aubergine/peppers, basil, lasagne sheets) once more, finishing off with a thicker layer of the white sauce. Sprinkle with the remaining grated cheese and bake for about 35-40 minutes until golden brown.
7. Let the Lasagne cool a bit before serving – goes great with garlic bread!