Last night I was looking over an italian menu while trying to figure out what to eat, and saw stuffed shells. This launched me into a huge missing cheese/wanting to eat raviolis and pink sauce and calzones. I was just looking in the cabinet to see what I could whip up for lunch and saw a bag of whole wheat shells, and some silken tofu. I put this creamy shell pasta together as a healthier homage to stuffed shells and to get my “ricotta cheese” fix. : )
16 oz. whole wheat shells, or other pasta, cooked according to package directions
Vodka Sauce (or leave out the vodka for a pink sauce)
2 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 medium onion, chopped
3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 c. vodka, if using
1 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
2 tsp. tomato paste
1 tsp. italian seasoning
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tbsp. dried parsley
salt & pepper & crushed red peppers to taste
pinch of sugar
1/2 c. of stock (or 1 boulion cube + 1/2 c. water)
1/2 – 1 c. soy milk or soy creamer
Spinach Ricotta mixture
1 package extra-firm silken tofu (or extra-firm tofu, drained & pressed), crumbled
3 tbsp. mozzarella style shreds
3 tbsp. nutritional yeast
3 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
fresh ground pepper
1/3 c. frozen chopped spinach, thawed (honestly, i don’t even thaw mine, i just break it up and mix it in!)
1. Prepare spinach ricotta mixture by combining all ingredients, and set aside.
2. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a medium saucepan. Add onion, and cook for 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another minute. If making vodka sauce, add it now, and let it reduce by half.
3. Add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, seasonings, stock and spinach ricotta mixture. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for at least 20 minutes, to let flavors combine. Add soy milk, stirring until heated through.
4. Combine cooked pasta, and sauce. For baked shells, sprinkle with additional cheese shreds and put it under the broiler for 5 minutes.
I topped mine off with about 1/2 c. nutritional yeast and 1/3 c. vegan parm. Enjoy! : )