Saturday, 2 December 2017

Vegan aubergine lasagna

Loving aubergine lasagna at the mo. It's light yet tasty, perfect dish for any spoonie who can't deal with much pasta or heavy dishes. This is a basic recipe, so perfect if you're only transitioning from meat eater and still a bit cautious -All very normal ingredients that you'll already be acquainted with. Also easy to buy in Irish shops... I get so disappointed with American, even English vegan recipes that require things you haven't a hope in hell buying here. "Now add the Flogerddergabu to elder flower dew and beat in dried ugloblili berries as your egg substitute " -eh yeah mate, I'm having issues even finding meat free bread around these parts, but ok... But even though it's quick and easy, it's still full of great flavours. A real comfort food.

Ingredients


1. One large aubergine -this will be the pasta sheets.
2. Tomato based sauce -simply make your own with some passata or a tin of tomatoes, or I suggest one from Lidl by Batts, red Thai curry (see my photo below, oddly enough cannot find an image online of the product). It's got a creamy taste which I personally prefer for a dish like this as the more sharp sauces have my reflux going crazy. At the same time, it's not a sickening creaminess and is vegan too.
3. Hummus -this will be your white sauce substitute. You can of course simply make a bΓ©chamel with a milk alternative, or even buy Tesco's free from white sauce or similar (which Dundalk now have, by the way!), but I personally love the thickness of hummus. It's the perfect sauce really, doesn't turn to water when cooked.
4. Your veggies. LOADS of course. I went for: Cherry tomatoes, peppers and onions. Mediterranean vegetables work best in any lasagna, obviously.
5. Garlic and herbs. You can really use any herbs, go for your favourite flavors or use a simple dry mix.
6. Grated vegan cheese. Currently where I live, north-east, the most readily available vegan cheese are Violife and Nature & Moi. Both have grated versions, or simply buy the block and grate it yourself. You can usually purchase from Tesco and Dunnes Stores. I went for the Violife block from Tesco.
7. Meat alternative. NOTE: I did not add this, and I would suggest you don't either. Unless you are transitioning and still getting used to life without meat, or just trying this out for "meatless Monday"... I just don't think it's that nice for this recipe, or needed in it. Really just see it as a vegetable lasagna, fully packed of veggies. A light, yet filling dish.

For me adding in the meat alternative would probably be too much (on top of the cheese and sauces). If you have stomach issues relating to your chronic illness too, then consider just having plain, ol' veg. If you do wish to add in a meat substitute, I suggest a dry soya protein mince like this one from Tesco. It's really handy in the press as it lasts ages, and quick to make up.

Tip - For a dish like this, simply soak the protein granules in a bowl with plain water. Cover only until water is slightly visible -don't drown. Wait a few minutes for them to expand/ soak the water, then add in flavourings -soya sauce and dry herbs are good. Then add to whatever food you are making. Add to oven dish with your vegetables in this case, or simply fry up and have with some mash spuds. Yum. It's pretty versatile. 

Method


1. Pre-heat oven to 180c on a fan assisted oven.
2. Slice the aubergine vertically into strips and lay flat in an oven dish, similar to how you would work with pasta strips. 

3. Layer your chopped vegetables of choice, throw over some sauce. Add garlic, either fresh or dry or both as well as your chosen herbs.
4. Add another layer of aubergine strips.
5. Next, spoon out hummus and spread across. Add grated vegan cheese on top. Throw in more garlic if you wish, too.
6. Add another layer if necessary, but remember you want to finish on a hummus/ cheese layer for the topping. I like to keep it two layers, one of each.

7. Sprinkle some parsley on the top.
8. Cook for about 25 minutes then check with a fork, see how it goes through the aubergine. Usually takes about 35 minutes to cook, but time can depend on how thick/ thin the aubergine strips are and how many layers you have added. So make sure to check it.
9. Serve with a rocket salad. If you want a vegan garlic bread, Tesco's fridge section has you covered

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This is in no way a sponsored post. I bought most of these ingredients from Lidl, some from Tesco -that's just the craic like, I just shop there cause they are cheap. No monies was exchanged for this post, or favours or promises or even sneaky winks. Just an FYI. I would say otherwise - 'cause not declaring sponsored posts makes bad bloggers. Tsssssk.
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Here's some products to look out for...

Lidl

Tesco


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