Wholesome & Hearty Veggie-laden Lasagna

Serves 4

My whole family just love this is healthy twist on a traditional classic. It doesn’t have the typical fat laden Béchamel sauce, but is loaded with a rainbow of four hidden vegetables, has complex carbohydrates in the form of Brown Rice Pasta Sheets and has 494 calories and 22g of protein per serving. Not to mention it provides a massive 94% Vitamin A, 35% Vitamin C and 28% recommended fibre intake.

For the sauce, I make a hidden veggie tomato sauce in big batches almost every week, and have a freezer full of it because I typically end up using it almost every day in one thing or another. It contains onions, tomatoes, courgettes and carrots, so is a great way of adding veggies to your diet. Tomatoes contain an antioxidant called Lycopene, which is what gives them their red colour, but it becomes more readily available to the body when it is cooked. Studies have shown that this might play a role in preventing or even slowing down the growth of some cancers, particularly prostate cancer.

Aubergines are rich in antioxidants, specifically nasunin, which gives their skin it’s purple colour. Spinach is a good source of iron and contains high levels of chlorophyll and carotenoids which are thought to have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancerous properties.

For the sauce — Makes 4 Cups

INGREDIENTS

· 1 tbsp Rapeseed Oil

· 5 Cloves Garlic

· 1 Carrot

· 1 cup Spinach

· 1 tbsp Basil

· 800g Tinned Tomatoes (= 2 tins)

· 2 tbsp Red Wine Vinegar

· 2 tbsp Tomato Puree

· 1 Onion

· 1 Courgette

· 2 tbsp Coconut Sugar

METHOD

· Finely dice the onions, and grate the carrots and courgettes.

· Finely chop the spinach and the basil leaves. Mince the garlic.

· Heat the oil in a large frying pan, add the onions and sweat until slightly browning.

· Add the minced garlic, courgettes and carrots, stir for 2 minutes and then add the tinned tomatoes, spinach, tomato puree and basil.

· Stir until fully combined and then add the vinegar and sugar and leave to simmer on a low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

· Salt & pepper to taste.

· Allow to cool and store in the fridge in a glass container.

For the Lasagna

INGREDIENTS

· 1 cup Raw Spinach

· 0.50 container Brown Rice Lasagna

· 100 g Scamorza (or vegan cheese)

· 80 g Low Fat Cheese Cheddar (or vegan cheese)

· 1 cup Passata

· 300 g Courgettes

· 300 g Aubergine

· 1 cup Veggie Tomato Sauce

· 1 tbsp Rapeseed Oil

METHOD

· Preheat fan oven to 180 degrees.

· Slice the aubergine and courgettes lengthways and brush with oil on both sides. Griddle them until slightly browned on both sides and set aside.

· Put 4 brown rice lasagne sheets on the bottom of a deep (Dimensions) dish and layer 1/3 of the spinach on top.

· Then add 1/3 of the aubergine, 1/3 of the courgettes and smother in 1/3 tomato sauce and passata mixture.

· Sprinkle with 1/3 of the grated cheddar, and 1/3 of the cubed scamorza, a pinch of Himalayan salt and ground pepper.

· Repeat these layering steps twice more until you have 3 layers worth.

· Cook in the oven for 45 minutes and enjoy!