Recipe courtesy of Yadi Garcia

Pinon Pastelon Lasagne Roll-Ups

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr 25 min (includes pressing time)
  • Active: 40 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
Inspired by Caribbean piñon and pastelón, and my love of lasagna, I created these plantain roll-ups with a Chef Yadi spin. Instead of noodles, I use strips of zucchini and yellow summer squash and layer them with thinly sliced and baked plantains. They're stuffed with a homemade tofu ricotta to make colorful pinwheels. The sauce is a Latin plant-based version of Bolognese, made with tempeh and mushrooms, and seasoned with a robust combo of spices in the sazón. Smothered with cheese (which can be vegan), these roll-ups are a classic comfort revisited and remixed with island flavors.

Ingredients

Tofu Ricotta:

Piñon Pastelón Roll-Ups:

Sazón Tempeh Mushroom Bolognese:

Assembling and Serving:

Directions

  1. For the tofu ricotta: Press the tofu between two plates lined with paper towels for 20 to 30 minutes. Alternatively, wrap the tofu in a clean kitchen towel and press it under a heavy plate for 20 minutes to 1 hour. Combine the tofu, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, miso and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a food processor. Process until the tofu is smooth but with a slightly crumbly texture.
  2. For the piñon pastelón roll-ups: Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a 7-by-11-inch casserole dish with 2 tablespoons of the oil and set aside.
  3. Brush each plantain slice with the remaining oil and place side by side on a baking sheet. Bake until the bottoms of the plantains are caramelized and golden, 12 to 15 minutes. Flip the plantains with tongs and bake 5 more minutes, then remove from the oven and decrease the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
  4. Choose the 4 longest slices each of zucchini and yellow squash, place them on a wire rack and sprinkle with salt. This will release the excess moisture. Reserve the remaining slices for another use.
  5. For the sazón tempeh mushroom Bolognese: While the plantains bake, tie the thyme, sage and bay leaves in a bundle with kitchen twine or cheesecloth to create a bouquet garni. Set aside.
  6. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until hot. Add the tempeh and cook, stirring occasionally and adding more oil if the skillet is dry, until browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook until browned, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the carrots, onion and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the sazón, oregano and paprika. Stir to combine, add the wine, scraping the bottom of the skillet, and cook until almost reduced, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, then season with salt and pepper.
  7. Nestle the bouquet garni into the sauce and simmer until all of the flavors become incorporated, 7 to 10 minutes. Taste and add more salt and pepper, as needed. Remove and discard the bouquet garni.
  8. For assembling and serving: Cover the bottom of the prepared casserole dish with 1 1/2 to 2 cups of the Bolognese.
  9. Stack 1 plantain slice on 1 zucchini slice. Scoop 2 tablespoons of the tofu ricotta, draining any excess liquid, onto the center of the stack. Roll up tightly and place in the casserole dish with the filling exposed on top. Repeat, alternating the squash and zucchini for stacking with the plantain, until the casserole dish is filled. (Fitting the roll-ups snugly in the dish should help them hold their shape; otherwise you can use toothpicks to secure them.) Top with another 2 cups of the Bolognese and sprinkle with the cheese. Reserve any remaining Bolognese for serving or for another use.
  10. Bake until the zucchini and squash are fork tender, about 25 minutes, rotating the dish halfway through. Sprinkle the cilantro on the roll-ups and serve with a spatula.

Cook’s Note

Be sure to use plantains that are very ripe. They should be mostly black all over with a few yellow spots on the peel. Underripe plantains may crack when baked and rolled. Many organic sazóns contain less salt than conventional brands. If using organic, increase the amount of salt according to taste.