Lasagna sheets are the easiest way to bulk-cook. One night of prep, six nights of food – and making something incredibly nutritious is way too easy.
I went green this week and so kale and spinach were my core ingredients. Both are packed with nutrients and vitamins and minerals, so using them was almost a no-brainer.
And I don’t care if you don’t like either of these, because when they’ve been layered between pasta with béchamel sauce, chickpeas, and greenbeans, you really won’t taste it that much at all. So suck it up, and eat your greens (otherwise, no dessert!).
Béchamel sauce is usually made with butter and milk but, in the vein of veganism, I had to substitute those with oil and a milk substitute respectively. I used a dairy-free milk, which isn’t strictly vegan but it’s purely because I need calcium.
However, coconut milk, rice milk, soya milk… all would work perfectly fine. You would just watch the boiling temperatures for each, as heating the sauce too quickly can ruin it, so it’s a case of trial-and-error, really.
And yeah, this dish really is a template. You can colour it however you want to, but it really helps to stick to one or two “core ingredients” and work your dish around those. Otherwise you end up with too many flavours – and yes, trust me, in this case you can have too much of a good thing!
The Italians always intended it to be kept simple, and we don’t argue with Italian cuisine!
Baked vegan lasagna
12 lasagna sheets (uncooked)
1 can chickpeas
2 cans tinned tomato
3 fresh tomatoes, diced
2 onions, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
4 leaves spinach, blanch-boiled
6 leaves kale, blanch-boiled
1 generous handful of green beans
3 tbsp olive oil
4 tbsp flour
1 cup milk substitute
salt, pepper, paprika, oregano
- Boil your kale and spinach in salted water for 3 minutes, and drain well.
- Fry your onions and garlic until brown, and make sure to season it well while it’s frying with salt, pepper, paprika, and oregano. Add your chickpeas and fry everything together while you do the rest
- Heat up your tinned tomatoes and add your diced tomatoes as well. While this is simmering, preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius and get your baking dish out.
- Add your onion-chickpea mix to your tomato sauce, and add all your greens as well. You can roughly chop the green beans to however fine or chunky you would like them, and make sure to chop up your spinach and kale as well!
- For the béchamel, add the oil and flour to pot over low heat, and mix well. Slowly add your milk, stirring constantly, until it thickens. DO THIS SLOWLY. You do not want to boil your sauce. When it thickens, season with salt and pepper and remove from the heat.
- Layer you sauce and pasta sheets into your baking tray, and top off with the béchamel. Bake for around 45 minutes, and if the top begins to brown then cover with some foil until it’s finished baking.