And the winner of the Happy Days Nurseries Veganuary Competition is…

2 mins
Mar 29, 2023

Back in January as part of Veganuary, Happy Days Nursery Group launched a fun competition for all colleagues. After much deliberation, Rob and Graham from The Cornish Vegan, in Truro selected Alan, the chef at Happy Days Cheswick, as the overall winner with his Veganuary Nacho Lasagne.

Graham, co-owner of The Cornish Vegan said, “All the entries have been impressive, and making a decision has been difficult. We were impressed by the amount of vegetables and the novel twist on the lasagne. In fact, we intend to try it ourselves as it looks so appetising!”

Well done Alan! And again, thank you to both Rob and Graham from The Cornish Vegan for judging this competition.

Happy Days nursery group understands the importance of ensuring their children enjoy a balanced diet that is nutritious and delicious as well as free from allergens and is always looking at ways to promote healthy eating habits with their staff, children and their families.

We all know that we need a healthy balance of fruit and veg in our diets, and for our growing children it’s really important. At nursery our children eat alongside their friends and their room staff. The older children get involved in laying the table as part of their steps to independence and we make it quite a social event. They are always encouraged to try something new, as they often change their minds once they’ve had a little taste.”

Want to try Alan’s winning recipe? Please see below…

Veganuary Nacho Lasagne

Ragu Ingredients

50ml Vegetable oil
250gm Onions (peeled & finely chopped)
250gm Carrots (peeled & finely chopped)
4 cloves Garlic (peeled & finely chopped)
5 sticks Celery (washes & finely chopped)
250gm Leeks (trimmed, washed & finely chopped)
250gm Butternut squash (peeled, deseeded & finely chopped)
1 TBSP Mixed herbs
100gm Green lentils
3 vegan stock cubes
100gm Tomato puree
1.2kg Chopped tomatoes (tinned)
1 litre Passata
1 TSP Black pepper

White sauce Ingredients

100gm Vegan spread
100gm Plain flour
1 litre Pea milk
2 TBSP’s Dijon mustard

Additional Ingredients

200gm Vegan grated cheese (cheddar style)
Pinch ground Nutmeg
300gm Plain/lightly salted tortilla chips
20 Dough balls,
25gm Grated Prosociano (vegan style parmesan)
1kg Blanched cauliflower & broccoli florets

Ragu Method

Heat the oil with the onion, carrot, garlic, celery, butternut squash, leeks & mixed herbs
Cook slowly until just starting to colour
Crush the stock cubes and add to the pan & mix together
Stir in the lentils & tomato puree
Add the chopped tomatoes, passata & pepper, then use 150ml of water to swill the tins and passata packets into the pan
Bring the pan to a simmer then reduce the heat, cook for approx. 15-20 minutes ensuring fully cooked
Check consistency and taste

White sauce method

Melt the vegan spread in a pan then add flour,
Mix beating rapidly to form the roux, stir-in the mustard
Add all the Pea milk a little at a time, beating together well until a smooth sauce is obtained
Reduce the heat and cook for approx. 10 minutes, stirring occasionally

Nacho-Lasagne Method

Take a large baking tray/dish (approx. 40cm x 30cm x 5cm)
Add 1/3rd ragu then layer 1/3rd corn chips over the top
Repeat this twice more then pour and cover with sauce
Sprinkle the grated cheese over the whole dish
Shake the nutmeg over evenly and place into a hot oven and bake for 35-45 minutes until 0ver 75°c and nicely gratinated
Cool slightly and cut though 20 portions
To serve accompany with Baked dough balls, grated prosociano and blanched cauliflower & broccoli florets