EVENT: SUNDAY FUNDAY
THEME: CREATIVE LASAGNA
RECIPE: VEGETABLE LASAGNA
Vegetable Lasagna, loaded with vegetables and home made sauces is satisfying, delicious and a filling dish. Pretty easy to make once you have all the ingredients at hand. What I like about lasagna is that one can add any vegetables of their choice. Here, I have also used a mixture of three cheeses, cheddar, mozzarella and parmesan. Along with tomato sauce, I like to add béchamel sauce or white sauce to add a creaminess to the overall baked dish.
Sunday Funday is a group of Food Bloggers. Every Sunday we share some fun, traditional, hearty or easy recipes to make Sunday Family Meals a bit more exciting. To join this fun group, visit the Sunday Funday Facebook Page. Request to join in.
Theme: Creative Lasagna
Stacy who blogs at Food Lust People Love suggested we get creative with lasagna vibes. The casserole should have layers like lasagna. At first, I thought of using zucchini to replace the actual lasagna pasta. Finally settled down with making Vegetable Lasagna with both tomato and white sauce with lots of vegetables.
I make vegetable lasagna at home but till now the recipe has not found its way to my blog. This theme offered that opportunity.
Check Out Creative Lasagna By Fellow Members
- Chicken Alfredo Lasagna from Making Miracles
- Chicken Marsala Lasagna from Palatable Pastime
- Keto Chicken Alfredo Zucchini Lasagna With Homemade Keto Alfredo Sauce from Sneha’s Recipe
- Lasagna Bianca from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Mexican Chicken Lasagna from Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Pesto Lasagna with Homemade Noodles from Amy’s Cooking Adventures
- Pierogi Lasagna from A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Vegetable Lasagna from Mayuri‘s Jikoni
- Zucchini Noodle Lasagna from Food Lust People Love
For my birthday, hubby got vegetarian lasagna from the local Italian shop here in Magog. We just had to put it in the oven and bake it. First 2 spoonful or should I say forkful, lasagna tasted awesome. However, third morsel went into the mouth and bit on a meat piece. Thought maybe it is that one off thing. Another bite and meat again! Hubby did complain to the shopkeeper and all he could say was “Je Suis Désolé!”
It is actually so difficult to get a decent proper vegetarian lasagna. Reminds me of the time when my bestie treated me to a dinner for my birthday to Tamarind Dhow, a famous restaurant in Mombasa and expensive. My lasagna was filled with carrots only, with hardly any sauce and I could actually count the strands of cheese. What a rip off for a 5 star restaurant!
Previous Attempts At Making Lasagna
With vegetable lasagna not being on the menu of most Italian restuarants I’ve attempted this dish several times especially when the kids were younger. The pasta was too hard, the sauce too watery, lasagna too dry, etc. After they left home, I gave up making lasagna at home.
My Son, My Teacher
During my visit to Bali to spend time with my eldest son, he taught me how to make lasagna. No more mishaps, every time comes out perfectly. So it is actually his recipe, I just add vegetables that are available. The trick is to have the sauce not too thick or too thin. By the time the lasagna gets baked, the pasta absorbs the water from the sauce.
As we are replacing minced meat, the vegetables are best chopped finely. We add béchamel sauce or white sauce to add creaminess to the overall pasta dish. By the way did you know that the Italians call the pasta used lasagna and the dish lasagne? However, the rest of the world calls it lasagna.
Can You Prepare Lasagna Ahead?
Yes, you can layer it all ready, cover it with cling film or foil and keep it in the fridge. Put it in the oven about 1 hour before serving time. It actually tastes so much better the next day as the spices and herbs are allowed to infuse into the dish.
You can layer the lasagna and freeze it. Take it out from the freezer and allow it to thaw in the fridge overnight. Bake it.
How To Heat Up The Leftover Lasagna?
I heat it up in the microwave, as it is much quicker. If you don’t have a microwave oven then preheat the oven to 180°C and bake it for 30 minutes covered with a foil.
Lasagna Filling Options
- Add any vegetables of your choice, peas, broccoli, corn, cauliflower, spinach,eggplant, etc. Sometimes I like to add cooked lentils or chickpeas.
- Instead of white sauce add ricotta cheese, or fresh cream. Or add some grated paneer as a filling.
- Make it with white sauce. Add chopped tomatoes to the vegetables.
- Add cooked soya granules.
Pasta Recipes On My Blog
Ingredients Required For Vegetable Lasagna
For The Béchamel Sauce Or White Sauce:
- Olive Oil – I like to use a mixture of olive oil and butter to roast the flour for the sauce.
- Butter – optional. Can use butter only, use a bit of butter and oil like I do or use just oil.
- Flour – can use all purpose flour or wheat flour.
- Milk – I prefer to use 2% -3% milk.
- Nutmeg Powder – I like adding nutmeg as it lands a lovely flavour.
- Salt – add according to your taste. Remember, as it is a milk sauce you really don’t need too much salt.
For The Vegetable Tomato Sauce /Filling
- Zucchini – chop finely
- Carrot – peeled and finely chopped
- French Beans/Green Beans – finely chopped
- Mushrooms – washed, wiped and finely chopped
- Bell Pepper – any colour, remove the seeds and pith. Chop finely.
- Onion – use any, red, white or yellow. Peel and chop finely.
- Garlic – Peel and chop finely or mince. I like to add a bit more garlic. Add according to your taste.
- Tomato Sauce – thick fresh tomato sauce. I like to cut the tomatoes into halves. Add little water and allow them to cook till soft. And then puree the mixture without adding the water it lets out. I use that water for soups, curries and dals.
- Olive Oil – or butter.
- Salt – add according to your taste.
- Fresh Herbs – I use basil, oregano, thyme. Sometimes I use mixed herbs. If I don’t get fresh herbs then the choice is dried mixed herbs.
- Sugar – optional as it depends on how sour the tomato sauce is.
- Water – need a bit of water to add to the sauce. Can replace the water with stock or wine.
- Pepper Powder – I prefer to use balck pepper powder.
- Lasagna Pasta – I have used oven ready lasagna pasta or sheets. If you don’t get oven ready ones, then you have to boil the sheets in water till they are partially cooked.
- Cheese – use any cheese of your choice. I have used a mixture of cheddar, mozzarella and parmesan cheese.
- Chilli Flakes – optional. Adds a bit of kick to the dish.
WATCH HOW TO MAKE VEGETABLE LASAGNA
FOR BECHAMEL SAUCE/ WHITE SAUCE
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp all purpose or wheat flour
- 2 cups milk
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp nutmeg powder
FOR VEGETABLE TOMATO SAUCE/ FILLING
- 1 large zucchini finely chopped
- 1 cup carrot peeled and finely chopped
- 1 cup french beans finely chopped
- 1 cup bell pepper finely chopped
- 1 large onion peeled and finely chopped
- 3 cups mushrooms finely chopped
- 3 cups tomato puree/sauce thick
- 2 tbsp garlic minced or finely chopped
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1¼ -1½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar optional
- a handful fresh basil chop it up roughly
- ¼ -½ cup water, stock or wine
- ½ tsp black pepper powder
- 9-12 Lasagna sheets oven ready
- ½ tsp chilli flakes
- 2½ cups grated cheese cheddar, mozzarella, parmesan
PREPARATION OF BECHAMEL SAUCE/ WHITE SAUCE
- Heat oil and butter in a pan over medium heat.
- Add flour, lower the heat.
- Roast the flour till it becomes light pinkish in colour. Make sure to roast the flour well.
- Add milk, little by little stirring the flour mixture all the time.
- Increase the heat to medium. Stir the mixture constantly till it becomes thick.
- When you insert a spoon in the sauce, the sauce should coat the back of the spoon.
- Add salt and nutmeg powder. Mix well.
- Keep the sauce on the side till required. Remember on cooling the sauce will become a bit thicker.
PREPARATION OF THE VEGETABLE TOMATO SAUCE/FILLING
- Heat oil in a wide pan over medium heat.
- Add chopped onion and stir fry till it becomes soft.
- Add garlic and stir fry for 1 minute.
- Add chopped bell pepper, carrot and french beans. Mix well.
- Cover the pan the allow the vegetables to cook for 1-2 minutes. You don't want to over cook the vegetables. Remember they will still cook further in the sauce and during the baking process.
- Add chopped zucchini and mushrooms. Add salt. Mix well.
- Cover the pan and cook for 1 more minute.
- Add the tomato puree, water, sugar if using any and herbs.
- Mix well. Cover the pan and allow the sauce to cook over low to medium heat for 2-3 minutes.
PREPARE THE LAYERS
- Preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Take a big oven proof baking dish. Usually a 9"X13" is ideal for this recipe.
- First of all keep 1 cup of white sauce and ½ cup vegetable tomato sauce on the side for the topping.
- Smear some white sauce and the tomato sauce on the bottom of the baking tray.
- Arrange the lasagna pasta sheets over it.
- Add half of the vegetable tomato sauce over the sheets. Spread it out evenly.
- Add half of the white sauce and spread it out.
- Sprinkle some cheese over it if you want to.
- Arrange lasagna pasta sheets over the sauce layers.
- Add the vegetable sauce over the sheets. Spread it out evenly.
- Add white sauce and spread it out.
- Arrange the lasagna sheets over the sauces.
- Remember the white sauce and the vegetable tomato sauce you saved, time to use that up.
- Smear the white sauce over the pasta sheet.
- Add the tomato sauce and spread it out.
- Sprinkle grated cheese over it.
- Sprinkle some chilli flakes, optional.
- Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil.
- Bake in the preheat oven for 20-25 minutes.
- Insert a knife in the middle. If it goes in quite easily the lasagna is nearly done.
- Remove the foil and bake for a further 15 minutes or till the cheese melts completely.
- If you like a golden crusty cheese layer, then broil it for 3-4 minutes on high.
- Remove the lasagna from the oven. Allow it to set for 10-15 minutes before serving.
- Makes it easier to cut the lasagna into serving portions.
- Add vegetables of your choice.
- Use cheese of your choice. I have used a mixture of cheddar, mozzarella and parmesan.
- Use ready oven lasagna. If you don't have any, boil the lasagna sheets before layering them. You boil them for 8-10 minutes.
- Use ricotta or paneer as filling along with the vegetables.
- Have at least 3 layers.
- Don't bake the lasagna without covering it. It will become dry.
- Remove the foil after baking the lasagna for 20-25 minutes so that the cheese can melt well and the top becomes brown.
- For that extra golden brown top, broil for 2-3 minutes on high.
PIN IT FOR LATER
A little request:
If you do try this recipe then please either
add a comment below,
send a picture to my email email@example.com
tag me as #mayuri_jikoni on Instagram
or tag me on Twitter as #Mayuri1962