Tag Archives: pumpkin

Pumpkin Lasagna with a Creamy Basil Sauce

This dish was inspired by a few butternut squash recipes that we’ve made in the past (butternut squash lasagna and cheesy butternut squash stuffed shells). But I succumbed to internet peer pressure and used pumpkin in place of the butternut squash. The result was a comforting pumpkin lasagna with creamy basil sauce.

Pumpkin Lasagna with a Creamy Basil Sauce -Luminous Vegans

I used canned pumpkin in this because (insert myriad of reasons here: I was lazy, I’m scared of hacking into pumpkins, I didn’t have a pumpkin on hand but I had cans of it, me and canned pumpkin go way back…). But by using canned pumpkin along with pre-made tofu ricotta and cashew cheese and no-boil lasagna sheets, we had an amazingly rich and comforting meal with very little effort. And those are the kind of meals I love.

Pumpkin Lasagna with a Creamy Basil Sauce -Luminous Vegans

Creamy Pumpkin Basil Lasagna

Ingredients

Pumpkin Filling

  • 1-2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 1/2 15oz cans of pureed organic pumpkin
  • 2 tbs vegan broth concentrate (I used this stuff)
  • 1/4 cup cashew cheese (recipe here)

Pumpkin-Basil Sauce

  • 2 tbs vegan margarine
  • 3 tbs flour
  • 1 1/2 cups non-dairy milk (I used almond milk)
  • 2 tbs pumpkin leftover in can
  • 1/2-3/4 cup of basil leaves

Other stuffs

  • 2-2 1/2 cups of tofu ricotta (I used Isa’s recipe in Veganomicon. Don’t have Veganomicon? Just google “tofu ricotta” and pick a recipe that looks good!)
  • 5 square sheets of no-boil lasagna (I can’t remember which I used but it came with its own little baking tin)
  • oil, salt and pepper

Directions

For the pumpkin filling, saute the garlic in a little oil until the garlic just softens over medium heat. Add in the pumpkin, broth concentrate and cashew cheese and stir to incorporate everything. Taste it and add salt and pepper as needed. Remove from heat.

For the pumpkin-basil sauce, melt the margarine in a pot over medium heat. Then mix in the flour to make a roux to help thicken the sauce. Once the margarine and flour are incorporated (it’s okay if it’s a little clumpy), slowly whisk or stir in the non-dairy milk. The sauce should thicken (see this post for pics). Next, incorporate the pumpkin and salt and pepper to taste. Take about 1/2 of the sauce and blend it with the basil leaves. Pour this back into the pot with the portion without basil. Sauce is done.

Now just assemble everything. Make the layers however you wish. I think I did sauce, noodles, pumpkin, tofu ricotta, sauce. Just make sure to save enough sauce to pour on top, otherwise some of the no-boil lasagna edges might come out a little chewy.  I also crumbled more tofu ricotta on top. Then follow the cooking directions on the no-boil lasagna. I think we baked ours at 400F for about 40 minutes mostly covered with foil until the end.

Pumpkin Lasagna with a Creamy Basil Sauce -Luminous Vegans

Layers upon layers of creamified pumpkin with sweet basil!

What’s been your favorite way to use pumpkin this fall so far? Are you sick of pumpkin or do you want it all day err’day?

Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Easy Sweet Potato Pumpkin Soup with Apples and Sage

Easy Sweet Potato Pumpkin Soup with Apples and Sage - Luminous Vegans

I’m ready for fall. Yet Atlanta still seems to be desperately clinging onto the remnants of summer. That doesn’t stop me from wearing hoodies even when it’s still in the 80s (F) outside. Of course, I’m inside most of the time so it’s not like I’m actually sweatin’ up some pit stains. But that’s beside the point.

The point is I am not going to let something like the weather dictate what should be fall. Bring on the cozy slippers, hoodies, warm apple cider and cinnamon. And I WILL eat all the orange foods. I’m looking at you sweet potato and pumpkin.

This no-recipe sweet and savory soup is easy to make and customizable. Mine was full of roasted sweet potatoes, onions and pumpkin puree. To add a little sumpin’ special, I topped it with sautéed apples and sage leaves and a sprinkling of vegan bacon bits. This no-recipe was inspired by a pumpkin soup from FoodNetwork.

Easy Sweet Potato Pumpkin Soup with Apples and Sage - Luminous Vegans

So the first step is to roast chopped veggies coated with a little olive oil and salt and pepper. I roasted three sweet potatoes with one onion at 400 degrees for 45 minutes. You could also use butternut squash, acorn squash or whatever roasty veggies you have on hand.

Easy Sweet Potato Pumpkin Soup with Apples and Sage - Luminous Vegans

The next step is to soupify the veggies in a blender. I put 1/2 – 2/3 of the roasted veggies in the Vitamix (I didn’t use all of it because it was too much) and added ~1/2 cup of canned pumpkin puree. Then I turned the blender on and slowly added vegan chikin broth until I got a consistency that I liked. I used about 3-4 cups of broth. I wanted this soup on the thicker side.

Easy Sweet Potato Pumpkin Soup with Apples and Sage - Luminous Vegans

Now it’s time to heat the soup while adding in some seasoning. Heating is important for dried herbs as it releases flavor. The blender I use heats as it blends so I did this directly in the blender (because dishes). Stirring herbs into the soup over the stove top is just as good.

I used dried tarragon, a pinch of nutmeg, maple syrup, salt and pepper all to taste. Thyme, cinnamon, cardamom, allspice and cloves are just a few other spices that would work well. Not sure how much of each spice to use? Start with small amounts, blend (or stir) and taste. Keep adding in small amounts until your tastebuds are happy.

For the soup topper I sautéed a cubed apple and ribbons of fresh sage leaves (about 3)  with vegan butter and sugar until the apples were soft. I used a Granny Smith apple because that’s what we had but I think a sweeter apple would work even better.

Easy Sweet Potato Pumpkin Soup with Apples and Sage - Luminous Vegans

To recap: roast veggies, blend with broth and pumpkin puree, heat and season and top with stuff. Pretty simple right? I also topped my apple topper with vegan bacon bits. The soup topper is totally optional but adds a nice fruity, crunchy and salty bite to everything that complements the sweetness of the soup.

So it may not be fall outside just yet but at least it is where it counts. My belly.

What are your favorite fall flavors?

Waking up to pumpkin

I know some people get sick of pumpkin recipes during the fall, but not me.  Pumpkins and the color orange  remind me that it is fall and I love that!

I got this recipe for pumpkin spice latte from Cassie at Back to Her Roots.  It was incredibly simple (I’m talking mixing almond milk, pureed pumpkin and some coffee and spices simple) and made a lovely alternative to my Sunday cup of joe.

I got it all frothy using my new immersion blender (a present from N) and sprinkled pumpkin spices on top. They actually sell “pumpkin spices” at the grocery store which is a convenient mix of nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice and clove for us lazy folks.

Happy humpday!

PS. Though Nikko looks like she is tenderly giving N a kiss, she is actually just trying to figure out what he ate for lunch.

Rustic pumpkin cheese ravioli

“You are a ravioli making god!!!” is something that won’t be said about me. Probably ever.  But when you have an extra can of pureed pumpkin from pumpkin muffins  and an overly ambitious cooking agenda, this is what happens.

We’ve never made pasta from scratch before, let alone ravioli. But this recipe from vegandad was so simple. We don’t have a pasta machine so we rolled it out with a bread pin. It’s hard to tell, but each one is “uniquely shaped and specially hand crafted” (read: irregularly shaped). That’s the rustic part.

The filling was composed of a can of pureed pumpkin mixed with about a tablespoon of satueed minced garlic and some black pepper…

…and the cashew cheese pictured below. I was inspired by Tal Ronnen’s cashew cheese recipe but tweaked it a bit. I blended 2 cups of soaked cashews with 2tbs of nooch, 2 tbs of lemon juice, 2 tbs of almond milk, 1 tsp tahini, 1/2 tbs onion powder and 1 tsp of salt. I stirred in 2tbs of chives after that.

I then mixed some of the pumpkin with the cashew cheese to make the ravioli. I didn’t use all of the cashew cheese mixture, only about 1/2 of it.

We had one very wistful watcher while we worked (whoa, alliteration).

After giving the ravioli a quick dip (~4-5 minutes) in low boiling water, we tossed it with olive oil, salt and pepper and threw a dash of nutmeg on top. Even though the ravioli looked kinda funny, it was creamy, cheesy, pumpkin-y goodness!

Smell that? It’s October.

I am in love with all October-y stuff. Um, hello pumpkins, Halloween, fall leaves, sweaters, cinnamon…need I go on? I was feeling prematurely October yesterday so I decided to make “The Best Pumpkin Muffins” from Isa (from Post Punk Kitchen, duh). I followed the recipe except I subbed maple syrup for the molasses and I used a smidge less oil.

I whipped up an icing to put on it because I just bought some Madagascar vanilla beans and wanted to use it. I used a fork to mash together 1tbs of margarine (Earth Balance), and 1 cup of powdered sugar. Then I slowly added almond milk until it was the consistency I wanted, scraped some of the vanilla bean into it and stirred until smooth.

These were so easy to make and are just as the title says, “The Best Pumpkin Muffins”. I’m going to nom on these dessert-for-breakfast muffins all week.

PS: I’m really upset that I missed the deadline for Vegan MoFo. 😦 BUT, I’m still going to use it as a motivator to start blogging regularly. Sleep is over rated anyways.