For the lasagne
1 Tbsp Coconut oil
1 White onion, diced
1 Red onion diced
4 cloves Garlic, Crushed
1 Red pepper, diced
1 Courgette, diced
300g Chestnut button mushrooms, halved. You could use the normal sized ones, just quarter them.
1 Tsp Dried oregano
1 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves , remove from stalk. (used 1 tsp dried if you don't have fresh)
6- 8 Fresh sage leaves, torn (or 1 tsp dried )
Small handful of fresh basil leaves, torn (or 1 tsp dried)
20g Dried porcini mushrooms, soaked (retain the water to use as per below instructions)
1 400g Tin Chopped tomatoes plus refill can with water and add to mix
1 Cup of Red Lentils, rinsed
1 Large handful of fresh Kale, stalks removed and roughly chopped
1 Pack of Butternut Squash lasagne sheets (you can buy in Sainsbury's) OR you can slice your own squash, but Im too impatient for that!
For the bechamel sauce -
3 Tbsp Olive oil
2 Tbsp Cornflour (gf)
2 Cups Almond Milk , you could use Soy here if you prefer
1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
150g grated Vegan mozzarella, leave a little to top your lasagne at the end.
A small grating of nutmeg
Freshly ground Pepper and Sea salt to taste
Firstly, soak your porcini mushrooms for about 20 minutes, in 30ml of hot water in a bowl or jug and put to one side until ready.
Heat a large frying pan on a medium heat and add the coconut oil.
Add your onions & peppers to the frying pan and gently cook until softened. Add your garlic and courgette and stir , allow to cook for a further 5 minutes. (make sure your heat isn't too high so you don't burn the veggies)
Next, throw in your mushrooms and stir, cook for a further 5 minutes or until they start to soften.
Add your herbs and cook for a further 30 seconds, releasing the flavours.
Add your red lentils along with your chopped tomatoes, refill the can with water and add
Bring to a simmer.
Drain your porcini mushrooms, add the liquid to the lentil/mushroom base. Chop your porcini mushrooms and chuck these in too.
Give everything a good stir and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
If your mix is getting a bit cloggy, add a little water here and there to get the sauce
consistency, you don't want it too thin though so just be careful here.
*Time to get your oven on - 180°C Fan/200°C electric/Gas mark 6.
Meanwhile, make your Bechamel sauce.
Heat your olive oil in a medium sized saucepan over a medium heat.
Add your flour and stir to create a roux.
Slowly add the milk little by little. Keep stirring, you may want to use a whisk to make sure you don't have any lumps. Continue to do this until you have used all the milk up. Heat for about 5 minutes , stirring as you go until you get a semi thick, silky consistency.
Turn off the heat and add your nutmeg and mustard, giving it a good stir. Then throw in your vegan cheese, salt and pepper to taste and mix well.
By now your Lentil/mushroom base should be about ready, chuck in your Kale and give it a good stir, allow it to cook for another 5 minutes just so the kale softens a little. Check the seasoning and adjust to taste.
Ok, now its time to get constructing -
Grab a large baking dish, about 12" across. Get your Butternut Squash sheets and put a layer (about 3) on the bottom.
Add your lentil/mushroom base followed by another layer of Squash sheets.
Add another layer of the lentil/mushroom base, then put about 1/2 of your Bechamel on top (use the back of a spoon to spread) . Add the final layer of Squash sheets then the remaining lentil/mushroom base and top off with the last of the Bechamel.
To finish off add a sprinkling of grated vegan cheese mixed with some thyme leaves to the top.
Put your lasagne on the middle shelf of your oven and cook, uncovered for about 45 minutes or until the squash sheets are slightly soft but not mushy when you put a knife in.
Remove from the oven, it will be a bubbly delight of deliciousness.
Allow it to settle for a few minutes before cutting in and enjoying with a fresh chopped salad or some steamed greens, its up to you! Yum Yum.