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Tempeh Lasagne by Deliciously Ella

This hearty, satisfying and downright meaty dish from Deliciously Ella is one for all the plant-based sceptics in your life. This recipe offers a natural alternative to plant-based meat substitutes which can often be full of synthetic ingredients.

When we made this in our test kitchen “I can’t believe it’s not beef.” “My dad would like this one.” “It’s so meaty!”

This recipe is large, we feel that as it takes a while to make it is worth it to make more, but you can easily cut the quantities in half if you prefer. Or make two smaller lasagnes and freeze one for later. Simply allow to defrost and come to room temperature, then bake as per the instructions.

tempeh lasagne
Serves: 8
Total time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Prep time: 45 minutes

Ingredients

For the tempeh Bolognese:
500g / 17.5 oz. tempeh
5 tablespoons maple syrup
5 tablespoons tamari
3 teaspoons smoked paprika
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon brown rice miso
1 medium white onion, finely chopped
1 medium carrot, finely chopped
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 x 400g / 14 oz tin chopped tomatoes
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

For the bechamel sauce:
1 litre oat milk
1 medium white onion, skin removed and chopped in half
Pinch of ground nutmeg
1 bay leaf
5 tablespoons plain flour
4 tablespoons olive oil
6 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon fine sea salt

Method

Begin by cooking the tempeh. Chop the tempeh as finely as you can, using your hands to crumble it if needed. If you have a food processor you can also chop it up roughly and then quickly blitz it. You want to achieve a crumbly, mince-like texture.

Place the maple syrup, tamari, brown rice miso, smoked paprika and garlic powder into a bowl and whisk to combine.

Place a large, heavy bottomed pan over medium-high heat and add a drizzle of olive oil. Add the crumbled tempeh and cook until heated through. Then add the prepared seasonings and stir until all of the tempeh is coated. Remove to a plate and give the pan a quick wipe.

Add another drizzle of olive oil and the finely chopped onion, carrot, celery, garlic and a sprinkle of salt and pepper.  Cook, stirring occasionally for 7-8 minutes until softened and reduced. Then return the cooked, seasoned tempeh to the pan along with the chopped tomatoes. Stir well, bring to a simmer and then turn down the heat. Leave the tempeh sauce to slowly bubble for 35-40 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. This low and slow cooking allows the tempeh to absorb all the flavour from the sauce.

While the tempeh is simmering place the oat milk into a saucepan with the onion, bay leaf, black peppercorns and nutmeg. Bring to a gentle simmer and then remove from the heat. (To save on washing up you can pour it into a jug, give the pan a quick rinse).

Place the cleaned pan back onto the heat and add the olive oil and flour. Cook, whisking constantly for 3-4 minutes until thickened and the mixture is bubbling. Then slowly strain in the infused milk in 3-4 additions, whisking well each time to ensure there are no lumps. When you have added all of the milk turn off the heat and whisk through the nutritional yeast and salt. The mixture should be smooth and pourable. (It’s not a very thick sauce).

Preheat the oven to 200°C / 180°C fan / 390°F.

Assemble the lasagne. Layer ⅓  of the tempeh bolognese on the base of the pan and ¼ of the bechamel, followed by a layer of lasagne sheets. Repeat the process again - bolognese, bechamel, lasagne sheets - and finish with a final layer of lasagne sheets and bechamel.

(The lasagne can be made to this stage up to 3 days in advance).

Cover the lasagne with aluminium foil and place into the preheated oven. Cook for 60 minutes, taking out halfway through to remove the foil.

Hungry for more? Find out our three most-viewed recipes from Deliciously Ella.

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