Torn Vegetable Lasagne

I seem to have a real problem with dried lasagne sheets.  It has proved to be absolutely infuriating.   I seem to manage to break them.  I am not sure if its in the packing into bags after shopping or because I have rather a rammed full larder cupboard but when I open the packet more often that not there are quite a few broken sheets.    I could get round this by making or buying fresh pasta but, if I am honest, I cant always be bothered or remember to do so.   And I love lasagne.   Its a brilliant comfort food.  So in the spirit of the saying “if life gives you lemons, make lemonade”, this recipe was born – and whether or not you have broken or whole lasagne sheets, it very tasty if I say so myself.

The trouble with traditional lasagne is that it is fiddly to make.   Lots of layers to assemble and a sauce to make to go on top.   Delicious but time consuming and often too carb heavy for a supper.    The great thing about this “torn lasagne” is it is really simple to do and its easy to make sure that the veggies are more plentiful than the pasta if that’s the way you like things!!  Its also quicker to make and any leftovers are great the next day as a packed lunch.

It uses pesto rather than the traditional creamy béchamel to keep things light and fresh though somehow it tastes just as comforting as traditional lasagne.  If you use the vegan cheese and pesto (shop bought is fine here though, of course don’t let me stop you from making your own ) then you can easily, and very “taste-illy”, make this recipe suitable for a plant based diet without going to any extra effort.   As I have said before, the best parts of a lasagne are where the pasta edges go crispy.   With Torn Lasagne there are a lot more edges to go crispy!! Yum

I tend to use a variety of whatever vegetables I have that roast well such as aubergine, courgette, onions, cherry tomatoes, peppers, fennel, tinned artichokes etc etc.   So don’t feel the recipe I give below is set it stone.  If you hate an ingredient leave it out.   If you desperately need to find a use for that aubergine etc that is looking less sprightly in the fridge use it.  If you aren’t vegetarian/vegan and  have leftover roast chicken etc add it in chunks at the assembly stage.  Make this recipe your own.

Veggies after initial roasting with olives and pesto waiting to be stirred in

 

Ingredients (serves 2 but easily doubles up)

  • 1 aubergine
  • 1 large courgette
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 yellow pepper
  • 250g cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp olive/rapeseed oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp pesto (any sort)
  • 2 tbsp stoned black olives, chopped
  • 100g pine nuts
  • 5-6 lasagne sheets (dried or fresh)
  • 25g parmesan or vegan Italian style cheese

Method

  1. Cut vegetables into bite sized chunks and place them, plus cherry tomatoes if using, onto a baking sheet.   Add oil and seasoning and coat.
  2. Roast veggies in oven at 180C for 30 mins.
  3. Remove tray from oven and add pesto and chopped olives mixing till everything is combined and return to oven for further 10 mins.
  4. Dry roast the pine nuts until golden, see photo above, being careful not to burn them
  5. Set a large saucepan of salted water a high heat.   When boiling, add lasagne sheets and cook till tender.  The exact time varies according to the type you use.   Be careful when you have added the lasagne sheets as they cover a lot of the pan and can cause the water to splutter out unless you stir
  6. Drain the pasta and immediately submerge in cold water to stop them sticking
  7. To assemble the lasagne, put the roasted vegetables into your oven proof serving dish.   Tear each of your lasagne sheets (if whole) into 4 or 5 pieces and add.   Toss through so that they are evenly distributed and covered in the pesto veggie juices.
  8. Scatter over toasted pinenuts and grate over cheese.  At this stage you can over the dish and leave until ready to finish.
  9. Return to oven to brown and crisp up (about 15-20 mins although if you have refrigerated the dish because you made it in advance, add and extra 10 mins to cooking time)

Ready to eat

 

 

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