Comforting healthy veg lasagna

When it’s cold, it’s all about comfort food. And one of my all-time favourites is lasagna. It’s a bit old school and daggy, but it’s delicious!

Lasagna can be a little heavy so here I’ve made a veggie one and revamped the “béchamel” so it’s actually healthy, but still tasty. As well as cooking for myself in this house, I’m also feeding a chef so taste is a priority! Furthermore, he doesn’t really get that excited about lasagna, let alone a vegetarian one, so I had to come up with something good and I’m pleased to say it worked! Daz LOVED it and I hope you do too.

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Using a pre-made pasta sauce is cheating a bit but who’s got time to make it from scratch? Not me! I recommend getting a good organic pasta sauce with 100% natural ingredients. All supermarkets have something like this now. Just read the label on the back and if it all sounds like real food and doesn’t have sugar, then you’re good to go.

When it comes to cheese, I always go full cream and organic. Goodness knows what they put in the low fat stuff to stabilise it etc. Full cream has heaps of flavour too so you don’t need to smother it with cheese.

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This recipe is healthy, tasty and quite simple. It doesn’t actually matter what it looks like when you’re layering all the bits because once it’s all baked, melted and golden it looks great!

Red Sauce Ingredients:

1 packet wholemeal lasagna sheets

2 cloves garlic

1 brown onion

1 red capsicum

1 zucchini

1 small brown bag mushies

1 can organic chopped tomatoes

1 can red kidney beans

1 500g bottle tomato puree or your favourite pasta sauce

Cheese Sauce Ingredients:

1 500g tub cottage cheese (Barambah Organic is my fave because of it’s high protein content)

1 cup pre-soaked cashews

1 cup basil leaves

2 cloves garlic

1 tbs dijon mustard

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt and pepper

Grated cheddar to top.

Method:

First the red sauce…

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and lightly grease a baking dish with olive oil. Put the cashews in a bowl of water and let them soak while you make the sauces.

2. Dice the onion, zucchini, capsicum and mushrooms. Saute in a pan with crushed garlic until soft and aromatic.

3. Add the canned tomatoes and stir, followed by the pasta sauce and drained red kidney beans. Season to taste.

4. This is your red sauce done. How easy!

Now the Cheese Sauce…

5. For the cheese sauce, place the drained cashews, garlic, mustard, basil and lemon juice in a thermomix or food processor and blitz so it makes a paste.

6. Next add the whole tub of cottage cheese and blitz so it makes a light green, creamy sauce. It’s quite strong when you taste it but trust me, you want the flavour. Season to taste.

Let’s layer…

7. Start by smearing the red sauce at the bottom of the baking dish, top with lasagna sheets, and then smear the green cheese sauce on the lasagna sheets. Repeat these steps by putting a layer of red sauce on top on the green cheese sauce, followed by lasagna sheets etc. Your last layer should be the green cheese sauce so top this with the grated cheddar cheese.

8. Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes! Serves 6-8 people. Great for lunch the next day and freezing. Serve with a lovely fresh green salad such as baby spinach, cucumber, balsamic and olive oil.

ENJOY! Let me know how you go!

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