Don’t Cry Over Broken Lasagna! That should be my WIAW title. I spent the whole morning cooking up some fabulous meals. I had to try the recipe ideas that were floating in my head, I had a few that were looming over me just dying to get tested. They were all successful, with the exception of my broken lasagna noodles, but guess what, no one noticed, they were too busy cleaning their plates!
I love cooking, every bone in my body wants to be in the kitchen. I have a constant influx of ideas for meals that nag away at me until I try them. The only problem is, getting these fantastic recipes on paper. I really need to start recording myself so I can go back, write them down, and share them with everyone. Even though my recipes are vegan, you would never miss anything if you tasted them. I love showing people alternatives to their regular stand by recipes, adding veggies and healthier options is my passion. I love to eat and even more, I love to share what I have made with my family. When I see them devouring and asking for more, my heart sings knowing I provided them with a meal they love and that is not only healthy, but helping them to thrive.
So now that I have sung the praises of cooking and eating… on to the WIAW meals!
Since I had grand plans for cooking all morning, I kept breakfast simple today. A light batch of whole grain pancakes mixed with some almond milk and yogurt instead of oil. I cooked them in a little coconut oil and served them with a drizzle of dark agave. These light cakes were so good, they were all gone in a flash.
These pancakes were pretty filling and surprisingly not a ton of calories, that is always a nice bonus.
After Mya was off to school, I decided I would start my morning off with making a batch of my cheesecake flavored bean bars. But since that just is not festive enough, I thought I would add my protein rich vegan pumpkin pie filling over top of my bean batter and see if I could turn them into Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars. Success! They turned out exactly as I hoped. I used a huge casserole dish to make these, and both layers had less than a cup of sugar between them! This casserole would make about 32 pieces.
The cheesecake bean bar layer was on the bottom so it could kind of form a crust, and the pumpkin pie on top since that was a softer texture. If I was making this for a crowd, and not just for home, I might have added a crumble topping of pecans, oats, brown sugar, butter and cinnamon. I try to keep the indulgences to a healthy minimum so no topping on this decadent tasting dessert today. They turned out fabulous, just as I had imagined. Don’t you love it when that happens.
First there was the “cheesecake” layer…
Then, the pumpkin on top…
Forty minutes later, it was baked to perfection. But needed to cool off in the freezer so it could be sliced…
One piece was not enough…
While the bars were cooling in the freezer, I cleaned out the food processor for the second time. I wanted to make crust-less quiche cups for lunch.
These vegan quiche cups are made with tofu and some soaked cashews in the food processor along with lots of herbs and spices to give it an authentic egg flavor without the egg. On the stove I caramelized some onions and garlic along with some shitake mushrooms and broccoli. I chopped fresh rosemary and chives from my garden and them combined them all into a batter. I prepared a cupcake tin with cooking spay and poured 1/4 cup batter into each cup. I baked these about thirty five minutes. During the last fifteen minutes of cooking time, I made some coconut creamed kale for the base of the mini quiches.
They turned out over the top exceptional! Best of all, four of these are just over 100 calories! The kale was a perfect accompaniment to the quiche. The next party I have I am going to make these in mini cupcake pans as appetizers. They were phenomenal. Andy and I ate all 12 for lunch, sorry Mya. I want to make these more often. I could make the batter and leave them in the cupcake pan covered overnight and pop them in the oven to cook for breakfast while I am working out.
After lunch, the dogs rested in the sun, and I cleaned out he food processor again, onto dinner prep.
Lasagna was on the menu for dinner. I had the brown rice noodle cooking while we ate lunch. I love to use Field Roast Italian sausage in my lasagna. I take four pieces and break them down to crumbles in the food processor. Then I pan fry the crumbles for a few minutes to release all the flavor.
I cleaned the food processor for the fourth time to make my ricotta. I use a blend of firm tofu, soaked cashews, and herbs spices and some miso paste.
Once I drained the noodles, I found they broke up into different size pieces. Hence, the “Don’t Cry Over Broken Lasagna” title.
I pre-chopped my mushrooms and zucchini and prepared my assembly line. I figured once the layers were on top, no one would know, but me and you, my readers!
Just add sauce and “cheese”… no one can see. This reminded me of Julie & Julia when Julia Childs flips her omelet and breaks it and says, '”It’s only you in the kitchen, nobody has to know, just piece it back together.”
Lasagna is totally worth the time and effort, it feeds many and there are always leftovers! I love leftovers.
Out of the oven and onto a plate, and no one knew anything except it was delicious!
This day was full of fantastic meals. There is no where I would rather be than cooking in my kitchen and eating with my family. I wish you many happy meals with your families!
Happy What I Ate Wednesday!