Lentil and spinach lasagne
December 28, 2021
Sometimes you just have to veg out on amazing comfort food like a classic lasagne. There are many creative ways to do this dish justice, but this is one of my favourites. It’s pretty easy to make, too. Serve with a leafy green salad.
Jason McNamara (Jay Mac) is the creator of The Kind Kitchen, a vegan comfort food café in Woodstock, Cape Town and on the Constantia Uitsig wine estate. Jay trained at the Natural Epicurian School of Culinary Arts in Austin, Texas. Having mastered the art of turning mushrooms into chicken, carrots into lox, celeriac into fish and beetroot into burgers, Jay innovatively reimagines all your favourite dishes, from mac ‘n cheese, chicken wings, burritos, bao buns and maki rolls, to burgers and bunny chow.
Lentil and spinach lasagne
- 2 cups (500 ml) brown lentils
- 1 litre (4 × 250 ml) vegetable stock
- 200 g baby spinach leaves
- 200 g baby marrows
- 1 Tbsp olive oil, divided
- 2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
- 2 Tbsp fresh origanum, chopped
- 1 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- Salt and ground black pepper
- 3 cups (3 × 250 ml) Marinara Sauce
- 250 g lasagne sheets
- 2–3 cups (2–3 × 250 ml) Bechamel Sauce
- 100 g grated vegan mozzarella
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
- Rinse the lentils and place them in a pot with the stock. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes, or until tender. Drain and set aside.
- Rinse and drain the spinach and marrows. Roughly chop the spinach and slice the baby marrows into thin rings.
- Drizzle olive oil over the base of a rectangular ovenproof dish (± 30 × 20 × 5 cm). Spread a layer of baby marrows over the base, followed by a layer of spinach leaves and cooked lentils. Scatter over half the chopped herbs and season to taste.
- Pour over half the Marinara Sauce.
- Cover with a layer of lasagne sheets, overlapping them slightly (break them to fit, if necessary). Spoon over half the Bechamel Sauce.
- Repeat the layers, ending with a layer of lasagne sheets topped with Bechamel Sauce, spreading it edge to edge.
- Cover with a lid or foil and bake in a preheated oven at 200°C for 20–25 minutes. Test with a skewer or sharp knife and if the lasagne is not cooked, cook for another 5–10 minutes.
- When the pasta is done, sprinkle grated mozzarella over the top and dust with smoked paprika and nutritional yeast. Return to the oven, with the lid off and bake for 5–10 minutes to melt the cheese into a golden crust. Remove and set aside to cool for a few minutes.
- To save time, use 3 cups bought marinara (tomato-basil) pasta sauce and 2 cups white sauce or cheese sauce.