VEGAN LASAGNE WITH A CASHEW BÉCHAMEL {vegan, gluten free}

Lasagne is the ultimate comfort food. A big bowl with a side of peas is the most warming evening meal, especially during the colder months. Therefore, creating a vegan version was an absolute must! Layers of tasty lentil bolognese and creamy béchamel between perfectly cooked sheets of pasta – you HAVE to make this! It takes approximately the same amount of time it would take to make a regular lasagne… without harming any innocent animals! It’s a win win.



INGREDIENTS

For the lentil bolognese: 

  • 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 5 cloves crushed garlic
  • 2 red onions chopped
  • 8 mushrooms – sliced
  • 1 cup red split lentils
  • 1 cup/300ml vegetable stock
  • 2 tins chopped tomatoes
  • 4 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 3 tsp dried oregano
  • Sea salt – to taste
  • Black pepper – to taste

 

For the cashew béchamel: 

  • 1 1/2 cups raw cashews – soaked for 6 hours (if you don’t have time you can quick-soak in boiling water for 1 hour)
  • 4 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 1/2 cups water/unsweetened plant mylk
  • 1-2 tsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp garlic powder/granules
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt – to taste
  • Black pepper – to taste
  • 9 pasta sheets – gluten free if needed
  • Grated vegan cheese (for topping)

 

METHOD

  1. Heat up the olive oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and sweat for 5 minutes until transparent.
  2. Add in the sliced mushrooms, chilli flakes, oregano, salt and pepper and mix well. Cook this for a further 2 minutes.
  3. Next, mix in the lentils, tins of tomatoes, vegetable stock and tomato purée and bring to the boil. Then cover and simmer for 30 minutes – keep stirring.
  4. In the meantime, preheat your oven to 180C and make the cashew béchamel. Drain and rinse the soaked cashews, then simply add all the ingredients to your blender and blitz until smooth. Test the mixture and add any more of the ingredients to taste! It may need more liquid to become the right consistency.
  5. Soften your lasagne sheets by soaking them in hot water for 2 minutes spread out in baking trays – make sure they aren’t touching (otherwise they will stick together!)
  6. When the lentil bolognese is finished and your pasta sheets have softened, it’s time to layer up the lasagne! Spoon about a third of the lentil mixture into the bottom of a deep ovenproof baking dish and spread out evenly. Layer three of the softened pasta sheets on top. Then, pour a third of your cashew béchamel on top of the pasta sheets and spread out evenly. Repeat this process two more times, until you end up with a layer of the cashew béchamel on top.
  7. Cover the lasagne evenly with grated vegan cheese and black pepper, then place in the preheated oven and cook for 35-40 minutes. Voila! Enjoy. It’s even better as leftovers the next day for lunch. 😍

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