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…where I use some of the lovely produce I found at the farmer’s market!

I am truly fortunate to live within easy walking distance of a pretty amazing farmers market.  Yet, while I always enjoy my strolls through the stalls, I find myself feeling a bit overwhelmed and even intimidated at times.  Not only do I want to buy everything in sight, but I feel like I should be eating so much better than I am – I mean, this is Mecca for a plant-based eater, right?

I see people buying all sorts of things I have never cooked with before– huge armloads of squash blossoms, kohlrabi or kumquats – and I wonder what they are doing with them.  And the greens!  I feel so inadequate when I stroll by the greens, knowing that I should be eating all of them all the time – or at least be able to identify them all!

Now that I am a plant based eater, I have promised myself that I will try something new each time I go to the farmers market – broaden my horizons a little bit and take my blog readers along for the ride.

I’m sure all of those folks with kohlrabi are making far more exotic dishes than my humble Farmers Market Lasagna, but I’m okay with that.

The trick to this one is to do all of your prep work up front.  Once the vegetables and herbs are chopped, this goes together very quickly.

Farmers Market Lasagna

Ingredients:  

  • 8 cups marinara sauce
  • 16 no-cook lasagna noodles ( I used DeLallo Whole Wheat Oven Ready)
  • 1 cup vegan cheese (optional)
  •  1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 15 white mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 large chard leaves, cut into strips
  • 3 cups fresh spinach (whole if baby spinach, chopped large otherwise)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced 

“Ricotta” Filling:

  • 1 package firm, silken tofu
  • 1 cup vegan sour cream
  • 2 tbsp miso
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 4 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 – 4 tbsp fresh basil & parsley, chopped
  • black pepper

Preparation:

Make your “ricotta filling” by combining the tofu, sour cream, miso, tahini, nutritional yeast, garlic, lemon juice, basil, parsley and black pepper.  Mix until semi-smooth (or about the consistency of small curd cottage cheese).  Set aside. 

Add olive oil to a warm large skillet.  Sautee carrot until it begins to soften, about 5 minutes.  Add zucchini and cook for an additional 5 minutes.  Add onions and mushrooms and continue cooking until everything has softened.  Add in spinach and chard, sautéing for an additional 3-5 minutes, or until wilted completely.

Preheat oven to 375 and assemble your lasagna: pour 1 cup of sauce into bottom of a large, rectangular baking/casserole dish.  Layer 4 lasagna noodles, overlapping slightly.  Cover noodles with 1/3 of the ricotta, 1/3 of the veggies and 1 cup of sauce.  Add another layer of noodles, ricotta, veggies and sauce. Add a 3rd layer of noodles, ricotta, veggies and sauce, this time using closer to 1 ½ cups of sauce.  Add a last layer of noodles and the remaining sauce.  Sprinkle cheese on top.

Cover pan in foil and cook for 60 minutes.  Remove foil and cook for an additional 15 minutes.  Allow to cool for 15 minutes before cutting.

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