Best Health

COMFORT and joy

Meatless Monday is about to get some competitio­n. These three genius comfort-food recipes from Vegetarian Any Day will hit the spot on any cold winter’s night while giving you an instant health upgrade.

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ROASTED RED PEPPER AND PUMPKIN LASAGNA

MAKES: 6 TO 8 SERVINGS The delicious flavours of autumn converge into a nutritiona­l powerhouse! This vegetable-packed recipe boasts herbed spinach, mushrooms and zesty roasted red pepper tomato sauce in a cheesy and rich lasagna with pumpkin ricotta filling. Salivating yet?

INGREDIENT­S

2 cups (500 mL) ricotta cheese

1 (398 mL/ 14 oz) can pure pumpkin purée

2 large eggs

1 tsp (5 mL) minced garlic

½ tsp (2 mL) sea salt

¼ tsp (1 mL) ground black pepper

1 tbsp (15 mL) grapeseed or vegetable oil

1 pkg (12 oz/300 g) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed out

1 pkg (1 lb/450 g) sliced white mushrooms

1 cup (250 mL) chopped yellow onion

1½ tsp (7 mL) herbes de Provence

2 roasted red peppers, seeds and stems removed

1 cup (250 mL) tomato sauce

1 pkg (12 oz/350 g) fresh lasagna sheets or no-boil lasagna noodles 2 cups (500 mL) shredded mozzarella cheese

½ cup (125 mL) grated Parmesan cheese

2 tsp (10 mL) chopped fresh parsley (optional)

METHOD

1. Mix together ricotta cheese, pumpkin, eggs, garlic, salt and pepper in a medium bowl; set aside.

2. Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat. Combine oil, spinach, mushrooms, onion and herbes de Provence in pan, and cook until onion is tender, about 7 to 10 minutes. Set aside.

3. Purée roasted red peppers and tomato sauce in a blender until texture is smooth.

4. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Assemble lasagna by placing 2 tbsp (25 mL) water in bottom of a 9- × 13-inch (3.5 L) baking dish. Place a single layer of noodles in bottom. Cut or break noodles where necessary. Spread half of the spinach mushroom mixture over the noodles. Spread half of the ricotta mixture next, then roasted red pepper sauce. Repeat layers once more. Top with last layer of lasagna sheets and cover with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses.

5. Cover with oiled foil (the side next to the cheese) and bake for 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling and golden. Remove from the oven and let rest before serving. Sprinkle with chopped parsley (if using).

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