My version of the vegetarian lasagna

I cannot and will not take  credit for this recipe as this lovely person who has done all the research and posted it here as the “No 1 Best Lasagna Recipe” http://mylasagnarecipe.com/. I’ve never made lasagna before but I have had it and this is an excellent recipe indeed.

My take on it comes in the form of vegetarian substitutes for the meats used in traditional lasagna and some other minor substitutes because I couldn’t find the right ingredients at my local grocer. Despite these substitutions, the ultimate outcome was great. We still have several frozen portions in the freezer. Since this isn’t my recipe, I will list the ingredients that I used and share the pictures I took of the process. For the full recipe, please see the page  http://mylasagnarecipe.com/. I’d recommend printing the recipe and grocery list from the link at the bottom of the page.

Ingredients:

2 bey leaves ( My own addition)

2 dry red chillies (My own addition to add a bit of spice)

500 gms of Quorn mince (instead of 1 pound of ground beef)

6 small carrots and 1 big leek (300gms) (instead of 1 pound of sweet Italian sausage)

I large onion chopped

4-5 cloves of garlic chopped

2 x 400gm cans of chopped tomatoes (instead of  crushed tomatoes)

225 mls of tomato ketchup (instead of tomato sauce though you could use Passata)

175 gms of  double concentrated  tomato puree (instead of tomato paste)

1/2 Cup of Water

2 tablespoons white sugar

1 teaspoon fennel seed

2 teaspoons fresh Basil leaves chopped

4 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley chopped

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon mixed herbs and few sage leaves form my garden (instead of Italian Seasoning)

1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

2 x 400gm tubs of low-fat cottage cheese (instead of 23 ounces of ricotta cheese)

1/2 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg

1 egg

200 gms (instead of 1 pound) shredded mozzarella cheese

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

12 lasagna sheets

Recipe changes:

1. For the cheese layer, I used a hand blender to puree the lumpy cottage cheese along with an egg, parsley and nutmeg. It did look like fresh ricotta at the end 🙂

2. I did use fennel seeds in my recipe. However, neither my partner nor I are huge fans of fennel and the flavour from a mere 1 tsp was quite strong. When I make this recipe again, I will not be adding fennel seeds.

3. Since I used tomato ketchup, the sauce was sweeter than expected. If you do use ketchup, reduce the amount of sugar you add. Alternatively, use passata instead of ketchup which isn’t sweet.

4. The amount of cheese in the recipe is quite high and I’m sure makes it very delicious. However, we chose to use half the quantity of mozzarella just to reduce the amount of guilt in eating it.

5. Finally, I don’t own a Dutch over or a Le Crueset (cast iron) pot. I used a wok as you will see in pictures and had the lid closed while cooking the sauce.

6. I cooked the mince-tomato sauce for two hours after adding all the ingredients. While it didn’t look any different after two hours, the taste was a lot more even after the two hours than before.

Tips:

1. If you are vegan, then the ricotta/cottage cheese can be substituted with mashed silken tofu and egg can be excluded.

2. Similarly, the cheese can be substituted with soy cheese or left out of the recipe

3. Alternatively, you can use a vegan beschamel sauce, the recipe for which is available at several websites including this one…

http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Vegan-Bechamel-Sauce

4. The Quorn mince I had contained eggs. A substitute for mince could be green mung beans.

Method in pictures: 

1. Quorn mince

2. Chopped leek, carrots, onions, garlic, bey leaves and chillies

3. All ingredients for lasagna

5. Veges and quorn being added

4. Sauteed veges and quorn

6. Tomato-based ingredients, herbs and spices being added

7. Ready for assembly

8. First layer of sauce

9. First layer of lasagna sheets

10. First layer of cottage cheese sauce topped with mozzarella and parmesan

11. Second layer of tomato-mince sauce

12. Finished assembly

13. Finished baked lasagna

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