For Valentine’s Day, we decided to stay in and cook a nice, romantic meal. What in the world could be more romantic than stuffed shells? We made the Cashew Ricotta recipe from Veganomicon (basically it’s 1/2 c cashews, 1/4 c lemon juice, 1 lb firm tofu, dried basil, salt, garlic, and olive oil all ground up in the food processor) and blended it with pumpkin and spices for the filling. We topped it with a simple tomato sauce and served it along with brussel sprouts, bread, and roasted garlic. Because really, nothing says Valentine’s Day like eating a whole head of garlic.
Ingredients for sauce:
-1 small brown onion, finely diced
-3 cloves garlic, minced
-1 15 oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes
-salt and pepper
-1/2 tsp each dried basil, oregano, thyme
-1 T sugar
Ingredients for filling:
-1 batch Cashew Ricotta (from Veganomicon)
-1 15 oz can pumpkin
-1 1/2 tsp fresh sage, chopped
-1/2 tsp cayenne
-1/4 tsp white pepper
-1 box shell pasta, cooked according to directions until just al dente
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a large baking pan by spraying with cooking spray.
2. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients for shell filling. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt if necessary. Set aside.
3. In a pan over medium heat, saute onions until very soft and translucent. Add garlic, cooking a minute more. Add the rest of the ingredients and cook for another minute or so. Remove from heat and blend with an immersion blender. Put a lid on it and set aside.
4. Now it’s time to assemble your shells! Spoon 1/3 of your sauce in the bottom of the baking pan. Stuff each shell with a large spoonful of filling and place in the pan. Spoon the remainder of the sauce over all of the shells. Cover with foil and bake in oven for about 30 minutes. Take the foil off and cook 5 more minutes uncovered.