You’ve had the rest, now have the best: The best vegetarian lasagne. For real. With a rich, thick sauce (with lentils subbing for beef) and creamy bechamel.
- 10 Small mushrooms, diced fine
- 2 Large onions, diced fine
- 5 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 cups water
- 2 cubes beef-style stock (I use Massell)
- 2 cups puy lentils (or any other green/brown lentils)
- 1/4 cup butter
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tins tomatoes, 440g each
- 140g tomato paste
- 3 teaspoons dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon coarse black pepper, ground
- 1/2 cup red wine (or you know… to taste!)
- 100g butter
- 1/2 cup flour
- 4 cups milk
- 1 Large bay leaf
- 4 Large peppercorns
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 pinch grated nutmeg
- 1 packet dried or fresh lasagna sheets (whatever you have in your pantry, but egg pasta is best)
- 2 cups cheese, grated
- For the tomato sauce, saute the onion, garlic and mushroom over medium heat in butter and oil for 20 minutes until cooked. The mushrooms should have released their juice, it should have evaporated, and everything should be a lovely golden brown.
- In a large pot or crock pot, combine the mushroom mix with the rest of the tomato sauce ingredients: water, lentils, stock cubes, tomatoes, tomato paste, basil, oregano, rosemary, brown sugar, pepper, salt, and red wine.
- Simmer at least an hour on the stovetop, or in the oven – more if you have the time. 2-3 hours is nice. I like to leave it overnight in the crock pot or slow cooker to really reduce it to a rich, thick sauce. Remember puy lentils will probably need a bit longer, and feel free to add more water if they’re particularly thirsty.
- In a medium saucepan, melt the butter and saute the flour for at least one minute.
- Add the milk, bay leaf, nutmeg and salt and simmer over medium heat, stirring regularly, until sauce comes to a boil and thickens. Remove from heat.
- In a large baking dish, spread a little of the tomato sauce and put a layer of lasagna sheets over the top
- Ladle half of the tomato sauce over, top with a third of the bechamel, and sprinkle 1/2 cup cheese.
- Add another layer of pasta, the rest of the tomato sauce, a third of the bechamel, and 1/2 cup cheese.
- Add a final layer of lasagna, and top with the remaining bechamel and sprinkle 1 cup cheese over.
- Bake 45min – 1 hour (depending on how hungry you are!) until lasagna sheets are soft, all is heated through, and the cheese is golden and bubbling.
- Understand why I call it the best!
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