As anyone who makes Italian food will tell you, if you start with a good sauce, you're more than halfway to good eating.
CREMINI MUSHROOM PHONEY BOLOGNESE™ SAUCE
1/2 c TVP
1c boiling vegetable bouillon
3T olive oil
2 large onions
10 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced thick
4 large garlic cloves
1T dried basil
1/2 c chopped Italian (flat) parsley
1/2 c chopped black olives
3 28oz cans crushed tomatoes
Mix TVP and broth. Let sit until liquid is absorbed.
In large soup pot add oil, TVP, all but tomatoes.
When onions are translucent, add tomatoes.
Cook on medium 30 mins or low 2 hours (preferred), stirring every 15 mins.
Note: For those who aren't familiar with TVP, it is textured vegetable protein.You can buy it from Bob's Red Mill or Barry Farm or other places on line. It's granulated soy and when you add liquid to it, it has the texture of ground meat.Very useful. I mix it with Better than Bouillon vegetable bouillon concentrate but it would also be good with vegetable stock or soy sauce and water or mushroom stock.
And since we know we're going to serve this with garlic bread, here's my recipe for Italian loaves:
1 1/2 T sugar
1 1/2 c water, 110 degrees (lukewarm)
1c sorghum flour
1c brown rice flour
1T xanthan gum
2 tsp salt
2T olive oil
1 tsp vinegar
3 egg whites
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix sugar, water and yeast in small bowl.
Mix salt, xanthan gum and flours on low, in mixer.
When yeast mixture is foamy, add to flours.
Mix egg whites, oil and vinegar in medium bowl.
Add to mixer bowl.
Mix on high for 4 minutes.
Oil cookie sheet or french bread forms.
Dust with cornmeal.
Ladle batter into forms or onto sheets.
(One loaf per sheet if using cookie sheets.)
Spray loaves with cooking spray.
With cool, wet spatula, smooth tops of loaves.
Cover and let rise to double in warm place.
(I use top of stove as oven heats.)
Make angled cuts in loaves with razor blade.
Bake until internal temperature is 200 degrees, about 1 hr.
Cool to room temp, out of pans, before slicing.
FOR GARLIC BREAD (Prepare this while the lasagna is baking)
Slice each loaf in thirds. Place each third, slit open and flattened outward, on unoiled baking sheet. Brush bread with olive oil, add a sprinkle of salt and fresh pepper, and minced garlic or garlic powder to taste. Chopped or dried oregano or basil would be a nice addition as well. While the lasagna is cooling, place trays of bread in oven. Bake till edges are brown.
FOR THE LASAGNA
Makes two 9x9 pans.
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
16oz ricotta or whipped cottage cheese
1t garlic powder
16oz mozzarella cheese
1c grated parmesan cheese
10oz box lasagna noodles
Boil noodles in small batches in large pots salted water, 1 tsp oil to prevent sticking.
Drain and lay out flat on plate as finished.
Flavor ricotta with oregano, basil, garlic.
Cut mozzarella into 1/2 inch cubes.
Cover bottom of baking dish with sauce.
Add one layer of noodles, cutting where necessary, slightly overlapping.
Dot with five heaping tablespoons of flavored ricotta, sprinkled with parmesan.
Add sauce, then cubed mozzarella (save most of mozzarella for top).
Continue layering, ending with noodles covered in sauce, parmesan and mozzarella.
Heat in oven 30-40 mins until cheese has melted or browned (my preference).
Cool 10-15 minutes before slicing.
Tip: Freeze individual servings for quick microwaving.