Hearty comfort food is the norm these days. Lasagna is the one dish meal I think of for an explosion of flavor and texture that appeals to my sense of comfort. In my quest to reduce red meat consumption, there is one champion and that is Beyond Meat. Earlier incarnations of vegan meat substitutes were riddled with soy and wheat, both allergens for me and many others, but these delicious burgers, crumbles and link sausages are made with pea protein. They are damn good.
For several years, my client menus have included something I like to call Summer’s Bounty Vegetable Bake with Italian Sausage Tomato Sauce and Cheeses. That’s a mouthful, both literally and figuratively. It’s my homage to farmer’s market and roadside stand vegetables, roasted and nestled between layers of meaty tomato sauce and gooey cheese. For my vegetarian clients, the dish is made without sausage and substituted with nuts. For a vegan version, there are some tasty soy based products that perform like sliced mozzarella and various vegan parmesan-like sprinkles found at local natural markets. Continue reading →