I’ve posted about my love of spaghetti before. Nothing much has changed. I still love all pasta, forever and ever. Red sauce, white sauce, no sauce. Baked, or not baked. With veggies, or plain Jane. And the shapes! Oh how I love all the shapes. Long and flat, short and rounded. Curly. Hot damn, I love curly pasta. I usually just go with the cheap whole wheat Kroger brand rotini, but I found some fusilli on sale. I rarely buy fusilli, but every time I see it in the store, I think of this:
And I was feeling whimsical, so I bought it up and replayed the entire episode in my head (such a classic) whilst I whipped up pasta with whatever I could find in my kitchen. This time around it was some marinara that I canned, like, 3 years ago (still ok tasting!), some mushrooms, red onion, bell peppers, and garlic. Except I was feeling extra peckish, so I felt like I needed extra protein. Enter the half block of tofu I had sitting around in some water in the fridge.
I really love tofu ricotta. It’s perfect for filling out a lasagna, stuffing shells, or topping a pizza. This time around, I just made up a quick batch, based on the recipe from Veganomicon, and then dolloped some on the top of my finished pasta. Yeah, I didn’t even cook it. Which doesn’t really matter! It still tasted yummy! Because of that addition, this dish ended up with the hearty feeling of a baked pasta casserole with half the time and effort. Win! I’ll even give you my recipe for it, because it’s so darned easy. These quantities can be adjusted according to your tastes, of course. I just happen to like a lot of nooch and basil.
Quick Ricotta based on the Tofu Ricotta recipe in Veganomicon
1/2 block extra firm tofu (about 7 oz)
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp powdered garlic
1/4-1/2 tsp salt
lots of freshly ground black pepper
2-3 tsp dried basil
1 tsp olive oil
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
Squeeze as much of the water out of the tofu with your hands as you can, and then crumble into a medium-sized bowl. I usually break off handfuls and squeeze them over the sink before crumbling. Don’t bother pressing the tofu, that will defeat the purpose of ‘quick’! Once all your tofu is crumbly and in the bowl, add in all the other ingredients and mix with a fork until well blended. The end.
Then you can do whatever you like with it! By the way, this is what all my food really looks like when I eat it, after I make it pretty for you: