This cozy, satisfying dish is low in calories and packed with nutrient-dense vegetables. It’s a perfect dish to make ahead and serve to a crowd. I recommend that you drizzle a little Presto Pesto on top for a delicious burst of extra flavor. Serves 8.
Ingredients for the white sauce:
1 small head cauliflower, rough chopped
6 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional)
Ingredients for the filling:
3 cups sliced button or shiitake mushrooms
1 big bunch Swiss chard or collard greens, or 4 cups spinach, chopped
1 large onion, diced
2 teaspoons herbes de Provence
Salt-free seasoning and pepper, optional
2 pounds butternut squash planks (see note below)
⅓ cup fresh chopped parsley or basil to garnish
- Heat oven to 400°F.
- Make the white sauce by adding the cauliflower to a steamer basket in a heavy saucepan with two cups of water. Bring to a boil with the lid on. Once the cauliflower is tender, remove it from the heat and let it cool. Add the cauliflower, garlic, nutritional yeast, and ½ cup of the steaming water to a high-speed blender and blend it into a smooth and creamy sauce. Set aside.
- In a large skillet, sauté all the vegetables until softened. Add a splash of water to the vegetables if needed; this should take about five minutes. Add the seasonings to the vegetables and set aside.
- Lay a row of butternut planks in a lasagna pan and top with a third of the cauliflower sauce. Top that with a layer of the vegetable filling and then repeat until you have used up all the ingredients, but end with a layer of the cauliflower sauce on top.
- Bake in the oven, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with fresh parsley or basil and serve hot.
Note: If you can’t find butternut squash planks already sliced in the grocery store, it is easy to make your own. Choose a large butternut and cut off the neck right where it meets the base. Use a vegetable peeler to remove the skin and place the neck on a solid chopping board. With a very sharp chef’s knife, slice thin planks lengthwise trying to keep a uniform thickness.
For the filling, sauté whatever vegetables you have on hand. This is a great “clean out the fridge” recipe.
Elspeth Feldman, Director of Culinary Arts at Vegan News Daily, is also known as “The Speedy Vegan.” She is an author, educator, and cooking instructor with a dynamic global following dedicated to her online and broadcast work, focusing on a whole-food, plant-based approach to everyday and special-occasion meals that are, in her words, “delicious, nutritious, fresh, and fast.” Her cooking classes are available on her blog, TheSpeedyVegan.com, and her cooking videos are on the Vegan News Daily YouTube channel. She was born and raised on a dairy farm in Zimbabwe and has traveled extensively, having lived in England, Greece, and Australia before settling down in the Mid-Atlantic region of the U.S. with her husband of 31 years, Paul. In her cooking, she brings a distinctively global context to her creations and loves to turn classic meat-based meals into fabulous, whole-food, plant-based vegan creations that are prepared without sugar, salt, or oil. Follow her on Instagram @TheSpeedyVegan.