My ultimate vegetarian, gluten free and FODMAP friendly lasagne
Gluten free, vegetarian, FODMAP friendly, nut free
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time1 hr 40 mins
FOR THE VEGETARIAN BOLOGNESE :
- 3 tablespoons oil
- 2 large carrots chopped
- 2 tablespoons tamari
- 1-2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 4 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 450 g frozen and defrosted tofu see notes
- 1 cup red wine
- 2 cans of tomatoes
- 1 sprig rosemary optional
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and/or nutmeg optional
FOR THE BECHAMEL:
- 100 g butter
- 4 tablespoons gluten free cornflour
- 4 cups lactose free full cream milk
- 100 g smoked mozzarella, plus extra for topping you can use regular if you can’t find smoked
- 100 g freshly and finely grated parmesan
- Salt to taste
- Good pinch of nutmeg optional but delicious
FOR THE ROASTED VEGETABLES:
- 4 red capsicums for roasting (you can buy a jar of pre-roasted if you prefer, but check the ingredients for onion or garlic)
- 500 g Kent or Japenese pumpkin cubed
- 1-2 zucchini cubed (see notes about using your preferred veg)
FOR THE LASAGNE:
- 1 packet Barilla Gluten Free Lasagne sheets
- 1-2 large handfuls spinach
- Bunch of basil
- Seasoning to taste
TO MAKE THE ROASTED VEGETABLES:
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius or 356 degrees Fahrenheit. Arrange the capsicums on a lined baking tray and place them on the top rack of the oven.
Arrange the pumpkin and zucchini on a separate lined baking tray, coated with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Note that if you want caramelised pumpkin and zucchini, you will need to cook them separately to the capsicums, as they create a lot of steam as they cook. I cook them together for time and ease.
Cook the pumpkin for 30 minutes to an hour, and the capsicums for an hour. They should be blistered on top and the flesh soft.
When they’re ready, remove them from the oven and cover the capsicums with a tea towel (either in a steel bowl or just on the tray) to sweat. This will make it easier to peel their skins off when the time comes.
Set the vegies aside. When the capsicums are cooled a little, use your hands to peel off the skins and remove the cores and seeds. Tear into rough strips and set aside, discarding the skins and cores (into the compost if you have it!)
TO MAKE THE VEGETARIAN BOLOGNESE:
Heat the olive oil over a medium heat in a skillet or heavy bottomed saucepan. Add the chopped carrot and cook for around 15-20 minutes until it is well caramelised and shrivelled in size.
While the carrot is cooking, whisk together the Tamari, balsamic vinegar, light brown sugar, tomato paste and oregano in a small bowl. Whisk until a uniform, thickened sauce has formed.
When the carrot is cooked, gather all the ingredients, ready to go. Add the tofu to the pan and allow to cook for a couple of minutes to lightly brown it. A few crispy edges are always a good time. Add the sauce to the pan and stir to coat the carrots and tofu, before following with the red wine and tinned tomatoes. Add the sprig of rosemary, if you’re using it, and allow the Bolognese to cook for around 10-20 minutes.
A lovely deep red sheen should develop and the liquid should have reduced considerably. The tofu should have absorbed colour and sauce, and should appear very much like mince.
Adjust the Bolognese for seasoning and set aside.
TO MAKE THE BECHAMEL:
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a low-medium heat. Once it has melted, add the cornflour and whisk until combined. Allow it to cook off for a minute or two, before adding the milk. Continue whisking at semi regular intervals until the mixture starts to thicken. Once it reaches your desired thickness, add in the parmesan, and continue whisking to combine.
When the parmesan has melted, add in the grated mozzarella. It will become very gloopy as the mozzarella melts – I find it easier to use a spoon at this stage. The gloopiness will become a delicious, melty and stringy béchamel – fear not. Salt the béchamel to taste and remove it from the heat.
TO MAKE THE LASAGNE:
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius or 356 degrees Fahrenheit if it isn’t already on.
Take a large L31cm x W23cm x H6cm baking dish (or even deeper/bigger if you have one) and line the base with enough lasagne sheets to just cover the bottom.
Add half of the Bolognese mince, ensuring you’ve got even coverage. Add the roasted pumpkin and zucchini, topped with half of the béchamel. Spread it with a spoon as best you can, making sure you get it to the edges of the dish. Be aware that it’s easy to misjudge ‘half’ and then end up with a half-topped lasagne, so you might want to go a little easy on this béchamel layer, just to be safe.
Next up, add the spinach and basil layer. You can wilt and drain the spinach and basil if you’d like – this will remove a little extra moisture from the lasagne, which is good. Totally optional though (and you might need to buy extra spinach to compensate for the wilt.)
Now, another layer of lasagne sheets, topped with the roasted capsicum strips, then the final layer of Bolognese. FINALLY, gently spread the remaining béchamel over the top, trying not to disturb the mince. Because the béchamel is so cheesy, you don’t really need to add any extra cheese on top.
Place the lasagne on a baking tray to catch any spills, and then into the oven for 30-40 minutes until the top is beautiful and brown.
Slice into 6-8 large pieces and serve.