There are many great vegan cookbooks out there, and this one definitely joins their ranks. It is simply so comprehensive and, for the most part, full of relatively quick and easy meals. It doesn't shy away, however, from vegan "sausage", "cheese", and other substitutes for non-vegan staples. If you are determined to avoid these, then you will need to pick a little more carefully through the recipes.
But if you are just starting out as a vegan, or looking for a solid, well-edited tome of vegan recipes and resources, do check this one out. It's beautifully photographed, and just full of things we'd like to eat.
• Find the book: Vegetarian Times Everything Vegan (Wiley, December 2010). $17.70 at Amazon.
Ultimate Vegan Lasagna
This is the cheese-free, noodle-icious, rich and hearty lasagna you’ve been dreaming of. A blend of tofu and vegan cream cheese makes a creamy substitute for the ricotta usually layered in lasagna, and a homemade tomato sauce pulls everything together.
2 tsp. olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped (2 cups)
3 cloves garlic, minced (1 Tbs.)
1 10-oz. bag fresh baby spinach
2 12-oz. pkgs. firm tofu, drained
1 8-oz. pkg. vegan cream cheese
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
5 1/2 cups Speedy Red Sauce (p. 307)
12 uncooked whole-wheat lasagna noodles
12 oz. vegan Italian sausage links, cut into thin rounds, or vegan sausage crumbles, broken apart
1 cup shredded vegan mozzarella cheese (3 oz.)
1. To make Filling: Preheat oven to 375°F. Heat oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté onions and garlic in oil 4 to 5 minutes, or until golden. Add spinach, and cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until wilted. Transfer to bowl of food processor. Add tofu, cream cheese, basil, and nutritional yeast, and blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Spread one-quarter of Speedy Red Sauce on bottom of 13- x 9-inch baking dish. Cover with 4 or 5 noodles, then half of filling, and ladle on another one-quarter of sauce. Repeat layer of noodles and remaining filling. Spread sausage evenly over top, and top with one-quarter of sauce. Finish with final layer of noodles and remaining sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella. Cover with foil, and bake 30 minutes. Uncover, and bake 15 to 20 minutes more, or until noodles are tender and topping is melted. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
(Image and recipe courtesy of Vegetarian Times and Wiley)