Thursday, October 7, 2010

Vegan Baked Ziti with Kale, Caramelized Onions & Mushrooms, and Sundried Tomatoes

Wow. Yum. Yum. Yum. Yum. Yum. The pictures may not look like much, but this vegan baked ziti (and shells) was so good I couldn't stop myself from going back for seconds and thirds... followed by spoonfuls, even right before I got in bed to write this.

The caramelized onions, sundried tomatoes, and the sort of baked "crust" the dish gets from the oven are the three main reasons I was able to make baked ziti mouthwatering without the cheese.

The kale was amazing in this too. My baked ziti is so nutritious, and so addictive. I was proud of myself for this dinner. :-)

32 oz can whole tomatoes
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
1 small carton mushrooms, sliced
4 sundried tomatoes, diced
1 bunch kale, diced
red pepper flakes
dried oregano
onion powder
garlic powder
fresh thyme
2-4 cups dried pasta
splash of red wine
tomato paste
daiya mozzarella

Bring a big pot of water to a boil; dump a 32oz can of whole tomatoes into another big pot on low; and heat some olive oil in a pan.

While the water, oil, and tomatoes are heating in their pots, chop an onion. Add it to the hot oil and let it do its thing while it caramelizes.  Meanwhile, chop some garlic, button mushrooms, sundried tomatoes, and an entire bunch of kale.

Add the sundried tomatoes and kale to the tomatoes.  Use a knife and fork to break the tomatoes up into small pieces. Let it all simmer down together. Season with red pepper flakes, oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

Once your onions are looking done, add the garlic and some fresh thyme.  Let that cook about a minute, then add your mushrooms.  If the pan has gotten too dry, add a little more olive oil to the pan. Cook until the mushrooms are soft.  Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Your water should be boiling - dump your noodles (ziti, penne, shells, whatever) in. While they're cooking, deglaze your onion and mushroom pan with red wine.  Let the wine cook almost out, and dump the contents of the pan in with the tomato mixture. Stir to combine, add a little tomato paste.

Drain your cooked pasta and dump it into the tomato sauce pot.  Stir to combine, pour it all in a baking dish, top with a little Daiya mozzarella, and bake for about 30 minutes.

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