Becky Campos

End of Summer

End of Summer

By Becky Campos 

Although I consume these three all year long some Phoenicians wouldn’t think of enjoying them in 115 degree weather. Don’t blame them one bit. But as soon as the weather begins to cool to 100 degrees we can think about enjoying them again. Of course I recommend you convert your standard chili, stews and lasagna into plant based menus. Creating plant based menus require creativity but they are easier than you think. You can simply take any recipe that is known for its high animal based foods and alter them to meet your nutritional standards. Lasagna is one of those foods I altered from your typical four cheese, three meats, enriched white noodles, high sodium tomato sauce to a vegetable based, small quantity of goat cheese, low sodium tomato sauce and 100% whole wheat noodles. Simple, simple, simple! Every ingredient is friendly to your digestive system, your liver and your gallbladder with out forfeiting taste. I know my readers would like more recipes, so here is my crock pot vegetable lasagna.

Summer is coming to an end and that means we are looking forward to some relief from the high temperatures and some warm comfort foods like chili, stews and lasagna that we sometimes reserve for the fall and winter seasons.

Crock Pot Vegetable Lasagna
1 large Egg Plant
2 medium size yellow squash
2 medium green zucchini
1 large red pepper
1 large yellow pepper
1 large sweet onion
2 table spoons Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 table spoons Mrs. Dash Original Seasoning
1 tsp. Sea Salt
1 medium can of organic, no salt added tomato paste
1 large can of organic, no salt added stewed tomatoes
2 table spoons organic goat cheese
8 ready cooked whole wheat lasagna noodles (Purchase at Sprouts)First:
Wash vegetables
Remove ends from Egg Plant; slice into one inch round slices.
Remove ends off zucchini. Slice in half then slice into one inch half moon shape slices.
Slice peppers into 1 inch slices
Slice onion into ½ inch slices
In a large stainless steel skillet place onion first and add all other vegetables.
Add oil
Add seasonings and salt
Do not cover.
Sautee vegetables on low heat for 12 minutes or until tender.  Add water to reduce heat as necessary.
Add tomato paste, stewed tomatoes and cheese
Cook for 10 minutes; long enough for sauce, vegetables and cheese to heat thoroughly together.
Layer vegetable mixture in a crock pot.
Spoon mixture into the bottom of crock pot.
Cover with whole wheat noodles (about 3; I cut one noodle into small narrow pieces to fit against the sides of crock pot)
Layer sauce and noodles one more time.
Make sure to cover all noodles with generous amounts of vegetable sauce.
Sprinkle some goat cheese on top.
Cook on high setting for one hour or long enough for noodles to cook.
Test noodles with a fork to see if done.
Serve with a ten ingredient salad and whole grain bread.

Optional: you may add one slice of yogurt cheese to vegetable mixture.

Simple Health Hint:

Preheat your crock pot on warm before layering lasagna.

Experience How Simple Health Really Is!