Interstellar Lasagna Recipe from A Plant-Based Life

MKarlsen Interstellar Lasagna 600px

It’s a pleasure to share some of the recipes in A Plant-Based Life with you! I finished perfecting this recipe the week that NASA’s Kepler Mission found a new Earth-like planet, 452b, so I named it in honor of the discovery. If I were an astronaut on a years-long space mission and could only bring one food with me, this lasagna would definitely be a top contender. Other great features of this recipe? Neither the noodles nor the filling need to be precooked—after some quick chopping, which you can do in a food processor, this dish will be ready to pop in the oven.For the full sampler of recipes with delicious images, click here to see the slideshow. Ingredients:

  • Layer 1: 1 medium onion, 1 16-ounce package firm tofu (drained), 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 ½ teaspoons white miso , 1/3 cup nutritional yeast, 1/3 cup packed fresh basil leaves
  • Layer 2: 1 medium onion, 1 10-ounce package cremini mushrooms (stems trimmed), ½ cup frozen spinach, ¼ cup pine nuts, 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning, salt to taste
  • Additional components: 1 10-ounce box whole-grain lasagna noodles and 3 to 4 cups of your favorite tomato sauce (or try Chef AJ’s Quick Sun-Dried Tomato Marinara)
  • Toppings: 1 medium tomato, sliced thinly, 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast, Salt to taste

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF.
  2. Make layer 1: Place the onion in a food processor, and pulse until it is finely chopped. Add the tofu, garlic powder, miso, and nutritional yeast and blend until everything is evenly mixed. At this point the mixture will be like a dry puree—grainy and not too wet. Add the basil leaves and pulse until the basil is chopped into small bits and evenly distributed in the mixture. Transfer the contents of layer 1 to a medium bowl.
  3. Make layer 2: Place the onion in a food process and pulse until it is finely chopped. Add the mushrooms, spinach, pine nuts, Italian seasoning, and salt and blend until everything is evenly mixed.
  4. Assemble the lasagna: Divide your noodles into three equal piles, to correspond with the three noodle layers in the final dish. Cover the bottom of a 9 x 13–inch glass pan with ¾ cup tomato sauce and ½ cup water. Use a spoon to mix the two and evenly distribute the liquefied sauce. Place one layer of lasagna noodles on top of the sauce-water mixture. Cover the noodles with 1 to 1 ½ cups tomato sauce, using a spoon to evenly distribute it. Add the mixture for Layer 1 to the pan. Cover layer 1 with the second layer of noodles. Add the mixture for Layer 2 to the pan. Cover Layer 2 with the third/top layer of noodles. Cover the noodles with 1 ¼ to 1 ½ cups tomato sauce using a spoon to evenly distribute it.
  5. Add the toppings: Place tomato slices on top of the sauce evenly around the pan. Sprinkle each slice with a bit of salt for added flavor, if desired, then sprinkle the nutritional yeast evenly on top of the tomatoes.
  6. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 35 minutes, then remove cover and bake an additional 20 to 25 minutes or until the top surface has developed a skin. Serves 6-8.

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