When we listed our house at the beginning of September I stopped cooking, for the most part. Keeping the house and especially the kitchen ready to show at the drop of a dime is crazy difficult when you love to cook. I decided we would eat takeaway meals from the nearby Whole Foods and eat out the rest of the time. The takeaway meals work in a pinch but just don’t fill the void of homemade meals so I’ve made a few over the past weeks.
Last weekend I made homemade pasta sauce from scratch and I contemplated making spaghetti and meatballs, manicotti, or eggplant parmesan. I decided to make manicotti and challenge myself by making it vegan. After stopping briefly at the grocery store to grab some silken tofu, shallots, and kale, I headed home to get started. I wanted to use cashews in addition to the tofu but I hadn’t planned ahead by soaking them overnight so I boiled them instead, and it worked great.
Serving Size: 2-3 manicotti shells
Prep Time: 60 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
1 1/2 cups of cashews
2 tablespoons Earth Balance butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/8 cup minced garlic
1/2 cup thinly sliced shallot
8 oz sliced baby bella mushrooms
2 heaping handfuls of chopped dinosaur kale
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 package of silken tofu
1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1 package of cooked manicotti shells
2 cups of pasta sauce
- Over medium-high heat, boil cashews in water for 15 minutes or until desired softness. Drain cashews reserving 1 cup of cashew water.
- In a saucepan over medium heat, heat olive oil and butter. Saute garlic and shallots until soft and fragrant about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and saute for 5 minutes then add the kale and saute for 3 more minutes. Stir in 1 teaspoon of salt, the black pepper and red pepper. Remove from heat.
- Using a blender or food processor, puree the cashews with reserved liquid. Over medium-low heat, place cashews, silken tofu, nutritional yeast, lemon juice and remaining 1 teaspoon of salt in saucepan. Stir until nutritional yeast is dissolved. Stir mushroom mixture into cheese.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and grease a large casserole dish. Spoon cheese filling into cooled shells and place in casserole dish. Pour pasta sauce over shells and place in preheated oven. Cook for 20 minutes. Allow to cool for five minutes before plating. Enjoy with garlic bread and a side salad.
I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did. You can freeze the leftovers or serve a large group and clean the dish in one sitting.