Vegan pasta bake
Enjoy this hearty, healthy vegan pasta bake midweek, then reheat the leftovers on another night. It's made with courgettes, lentils, basil and a clever cashew topping
- 2tsp rapeseed oil
- 2onions , finely chopped
- 3garlic cloves , finely grated
- 140g dried lentilles vertes
- 500g tomato passata
- 200g wholemeal penne
- 2courgettes (about 375g), quartered lengthways and sliced
- 15g basil , chopped
- 2tsp vegetable bouillon powder
- 125g cashews (not roasted)
- 3tbsp nutritional yeast
- ¼tsp vegetable bouillon powder
- 150g cherry tomatoes on the vine , halved
- 4handfuls of rocket
Step 1Heat the oil in a large ovenproof pan over a medium heat and fry the onions for 10 mins, stirring occasionally until starting to colour. Stir in the garlic and lentils. Pour in 500ml water, then bring to the boil, cover and cook for 10 mins over a high heat.
Step 2Stir in the passata, cover again, reduce the heat to low and cook for 15 mins more.
Step 3Stir in the penne, courgettes, three-quarters of the basil and the bouillon powder. Bring back to the boil, then cover and cook for 15 mins until the pasta is tender. Keep an eye on it, as you might need to add a little extra water if the pan becomes too dry.
Step 4Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. While the pasta is cooking, tip the cashews into a heatproof bowl and pour over 200ml boiling water. Add the nutritional yeast and bouillon powder, and blitz with a hand blender until loose and smooth – similar in texture to a white sauce. Remove the pasta mixture from the heat and level the surface using the back of a spoon or spatula. Pour the cashew sauce over the top, then scatter over the cherry tomatoes. Bake for 15 mins until starting to bubble at the edge, then scatter over the remaining basil. Serve half straightaway with half the rocket. Leave the rest to cool completely, then chill for another day. Will keep chilled for up to four days. Reheat on plates in the microwave until piping hot and serve with the remaining rocket.