Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, lightly oil 13x9 baking dish
For Mashed Potato Layer
5 large potatoes - peel and slice or cube
1/4 Cup of Vegan Butter (I prefer Earth Balance)
1/2 Cup Vegan Mayo (Just Mayo is an excellent choice)
1/4 to 1/2 Cup Unsweetened Vegan Milk Substitute (Almond, Soy, Coconut)
1/8 to 1/4 tsp White Pepper (optional, but great if you have on hand)
For the Lentil Layer:
1-2 TBSP olive oil
1 large onion, diced*
3 cloves of minced garlic
2 carrots, chopped
4 celery stalks, sliced
1 lb of prepared lentils (I use an entire package of prepared lentils from Trader Joe's - which is just over a pound, but you can use canned prepared lentils, or steam them yourself)
2 cans of fire roasted tomatoes (regular canned tomatoes will also work, but I prefer the taste of the fire roasted in this recipe)
1/2 Cup frozen peas
1 TBSP vegan Worcestershire (look for this item at Asian markets)
1 TBSP Braggs Liquid Aminos (if you don't have this on hand use soy sauce, or tamari)
2 tsp Italian Seasoning
1/4 Cup nutritional yeast
1/4 tsp Hungarian Paprika (my preference, you can use regular or smoked paprika also)
Boil the potatoes until fork tender, drain the water. I prefer using a hand masher, but you can use a stand mixer or hand beater if you prefer. Add the butter to the boiled potatoes first, mix around until thoroughly melted, then add full amount of vegan mayo, mash together, add milk, white pepper, salt and pepper (go easy on both the salt and pepper - just add it to taste), mash thoroughly - add milk until you reach the desired level of creaminess.
Add olive oil to large - medium heat skillet, saute onions, garlic, celery, and carrots until onions are translucent, add lentils with Worcestershire and braggs, saute for 1-2 minutes. Add Italian seasoning, paprika, frozen peas, and canned tomatoes, saute another 1-2 minutes. Add nutritional yeast. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Pour lentil layer into prepared baking dish, top with mashed potatoes, sprinkle Hungarian or paprika of your choice over the mashed potatoes or top with shredded vegan cheese such as Daiya. Cover with foil.
Bake in preheated oven covered for 30 minutes, remove cover and bake an additional 5 minutes. Serve immediately.
*If you prefer you can use leeks - I get frozen leeks from Trader Joe's and will sub 1 1/2 cups for the onion - add them to your olive oil frozen and saute with the garlic, celery, and carrots.
Set your slow cooker on medium to high heat. Place the following in your slow cooker:
1 bag frozen bell pepper onion blend - fire roasted or regular
3 cloves minced garlic
1 can kidney beans, drained, rinsed well
1 can pinto beans, drained, rinsed well
1 can black beans, drained, rinsed well
1 can garbanzo beans, drained, rinsed well
1 can hot Rotel
1 can regular Rotel
1 can fire roasted tomatoes
2 small or 1 large can of mushrooms, drained, rinsed well
2 tsp oregano
3 TBSP chili powder
1 TBSP cumin
1 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder
Mix everything together very well, if you would like, you can add 2 TBSP of chia seeds for thickening, and the nutritional benefits - sprinkle the chia seeds in after mixing all other ingredients together. They tend to clump together - mix well. slow cook a minimum of four hours.
Serve with shredded vegan cheese such as Daiya, chopped green onions, smart dogs with buns, vegan sour cream, or eat as is!