Most plant-based ricotta recipes out there are strictly cashew ricotta or tofu ricotta; L wanted to combine the two to achieve vegan ricotta blisssss *insert hands raising emoji here*. L & J love all varieties of cuisines but L tends to gravitate towards Italian foods—stuffed shells, manicotti, pizza, lasagna—it was obvious she needed to perfect her own version. And so this simple, cashew-tofu ricotta was BORN! The tofu provides a creamy texture while the cashews and nooch bring a nutty flavor, as chez should have. The best part? It’s not full of fat, as typical dairy ricotta is, but rather full of protein. Basically, you should feel free to indulge in this as much as you want.
Yields 18 ounces
1-12 oz firm tofu
3/4 cup cashews (soaked for at least two hours) *
1/3 cup fresh basil
3 tbsp nooch **
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp garlic powder
3 tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup + 1 ½ tbsp cashew milk (or your favorite nondairy milk
Salt & pepper to taste
Throw all the goodies (except the 1 ½ tbsp milk) into a food processor or blender and pulse on medium-high speed until well combined. When it comes to salt & pepper, I try to use very little salt, while I enjoy a crazy amount of pepper, so you season as you please. You’ll most likely need to stop a few times to scrape down the sides with a spoon; that tofu likes to be a tough bastard sometimes. If you like the consistency, you’re done! If you want it a bit creamier, slowly add the reserved cashew milk and pulse again until combined. You can choose to use this immediately or store in the fridge for a couple days. I personally like to let it sit for at least 6 hours to ensure the ingredients have ample time to mingle.
*If you’re anything like us, you have a billion things going on a day and you may not always remember to set those cashews out in water. No worries! If you have a hectic day, place the cashews in water the night before to soak overnight. Hell, if you forget to do that, it’s perfectly okay to boil them for 30 minutes right before throwing this all together. Live your crazy life, eat great food; we got you.
**Let’s talk about nooch for a moment. Don’t know what nooch is? Crawl out of that hole and get with the program. Nooch—also known as nutritional yeast—found its way through the gates of heaven and came down for us unworthy people to enjoy (just kidding, you are worthy because you don’t exploit animals for their “resources”). Nooch can typically be found at any health food store, but if not, it can be replaced here with vegan parmesan.