As I mentioned in my menu plan for the week, I’ve been experimenting with cashews as a dairy substitute lately. Cashews are definitely my favorite nut and, surprisingly, you can whip them up into a creamy sauce that mimics sauces made with dairy. Yes, it’s true! We’ve had cashew alfredo sauce on pasta, but I wanted to see how it would hold up in the oven, so I used it on this vegan mushroom and kale lasagna.
The sauce I used in this lasagna is based on the Cashew Alfredo Sauce on VegWeb (sorry, no link–I had to take it out because it’s being flagged for malware). I doubled the recipe and added rosemary, one of my favorite herbs. (Really, rosemary makes everything taste better, doesn’t it?) The sauce definitely thickens from being baked, but covering the dish with foil helps.
A vegan mushroom and kale lasagna with creamy rosemary sauce.
- 12 whole wheat lasagna noodles
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 3 cups boiling water, reserved from cooking lasagna noodles
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 3 garlic cloves
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1 tbsp. fresh rosemary, minced
- 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
- 1 pound mushrooms, sliced (any kind you like is fine)
- 3/4 pound kale, rinsed thoroughly, stems removed, and chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Prepare lasagna noodles according to instructions on package, reserving 3 cups of cooking liquid.
- To make sauce, place raw cashews in a food processor and pulse until nuts are very fine--you want them to be a flour-like consistency. Add in one cup of reserved water, process until smooth. Add additional water as needed until sauce has a creamy, alfredo-like texture, neither too thick nor too thin. Add the lemon juice, garlic, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, nutritional yeast, and rosemary. Process again until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook until softened, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add mushrooms and cook until liquid evaporates and mushrooms begin to brown, about 8 minutes. Stir in kale and continue cooking until wilted; remove from heat.
- Spread about 1/2 cup of the cashew sauce on the bottom of a 8 x 8 inch baking dish. Layer 4 lasagna noodles and top with half of the veggie mixture. Top with 1/3 of remaining cashew sauce, 4 more noodles, remaining veggie mixture, another third of the cashew sauce, and then the rest of the noodles. Spread the last of the cashew sauce over the top of the lasagna. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, remove foil and bake for 5 minutes more.