Vegetable Lasagna Rolls

Serves 6

Tofu is made not from soybeans but from their milk. Although native to east Asia, soybeans are also grow in the United States. About 94 percent of the U.S. soy crop is genetically modified, so it’s best to choose organic soy, if possible. Tofu is made by curdling soy milk with heat and a coagulant like nigiri, the curds are then pressed into a sliceable cake. Tofu is available in varying degrees of softness.

Cook: The key to cooking with tofu is to drain it from its water and pressing it dry. Then it can successfully be used as a filling, as in this dish, or as the main event of any meal. Tofu will absorb the flavor of seasonings and marinades just like an animal protein does. 

Eat: This dish is a meal in itself – just serve with a green salad or cooked greens.

Store: I always use an airtight glass container and in that, this dish keeps for four days. Do not freeze. To reheat, add the lasagna and little tomato sauce to a baking dish, cover with foil and place in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes. 

Waste: Use any vegetables going bad in this dish – it’s that versatile.

Connect: When I created this recipe decades ago, I did so to usher my father toward healthier choices. He loves lasagna, and I wanted to find a way to make this adored dish so it didn’t live on the “heart attack specials menu.” Instead of ricotta, I used tofu and flavored it like cheese, using miso, herbs and spices. He loved it – and never knew the difference. If you have a loved one like my dad, give this dish a shot. If you have kids, it’s also a great dish to have them take part in making.

  • 1 package lasagna noodles (discard broken noodles)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, small dice
  • 1/4 pound shitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into 1/4 moons
  • 1 bunch spinach,* cleaned and coarsely chopped
  • 1 pound (1 package) firm tofu, crushed
  • 1/3 cup mellow white miso, not sweet
  • 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, minced
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup shredded dairy free cheese, optional
  1. In a large pot, bring water and 1 tablespoon of olive oil to boil and add noodles. Cook for about 10 minutes or until soft, but not too soft. Strain, mix with 1 tablespoon olive oil and lay on flat surface
  2. In a large sauté pan, heat oil on medium. Add garlic and onions and sauté until onions are wilted. Then add remaining vegetables and cook until soft (about 5 minutes).
  3. Place tofu in bowl and crush with hands (should look like ricotta cheese); combine with herbs and miso and mix well
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  5. To assemble lasagna, take one noodle and lay on a flat surface. Spread tofu filling on 3/4 of a noodle then layer vegetables, roughly 2 tablespoons, on top. Roll the noodle to form a spiral. Place in a baking dish. Repeat until noodles are finished
  6. Cover lasagna with can of crushed tomatoes, dairy-free cheese, if desired, then bake for 15 minutes to finish.

Nutrition: 4 ounces (about 1/4 block) yields 18 grams of protein and 77 percent of the daily value of calcium; tofu is a very good source of manganese, copper and selenium, in addition to other vitamins and minerals.