My first Sunday in Brazil, I had my first experience with Churrasco. I did not speak a word of Portuguese, so I did not understand what they were telling me we were going to do that day. Luckily one of my friends had called the people I was staying with, and let them know that I didn't eat meat or dairy.
Churrasco is a barbecue. They usually get together with friends and family and have a bbq on Sunday afternoons, and grills lots of meat and eat lots of food. The family I was staying with were so kind to me and took good care of me those first few days. The woman of the house made me a vegan lasagna since I couldn't eat most of the other food that people had brought. It was a lasagna unlike any I had ever had. It was DELICIOUS!
So I just had to share it with you. I made this for my husband and he loved it and even told his friends about it, which means its a keeper.
2-3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, diced
10 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup marinara
1 cup water
2 1/2 cups veggie crumbles (your favorite beef-like substitute)
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
2-3 cups dairy-free cheese (I used Daiya) OPTIONAL
12 lasagna noodles
1. On a medium heat, add olive oil to your pan as well as your minced onions. Sauté for 3 minutes, then add the garlic and sauté for another 3 minutes. Stir in the veggie crumbles and sauté for 5 minutes. Add oil or water if needed to sauté. Add the water and marinara sauce, and cook for 15 minutes. Add the almond milk (or other unsweetened dairy-free milk) mix in, and turn off heat.
2. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook the lasagna noodles for 8-10 minutes or until they are al dente. Drain the noodles, and rinse in cold water.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).
4. To assemble, spread some of the sauce on the bottom of a baking dish. Place 3 noodles lengthwise over the sauce. Spread with about 1 cup sauce, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup dairy-free cheese. Repeat the layers, and top off with the remaining dairy-free cheese. Cover with foil (make sure foil does not touch the cheese).
5. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes. Remove foil, and bake for 12-15 more minutes. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.
When choosing your veggie crumbles, there are plenty of options. Usually I will use Beyond Crumbles, which is a great vegan option. However, the type that was used in Brazil was a TSP (Textured Soy Protein) or TVP (Textured Vegetable Protein), and either one is a great option. Just add a little vegan "beef-like" seasoning if you're going to use one of those.
Look at the different Marinara sauces and try to use one that has less sugar in it.
Letting the sauce boil helps bring out more of the flavors of the ingredients. Just make sure not to add the dairy-free milk until the end because you do not want it to curdle.