I have lately discovered how to make vegan ricotta-style cheese, so I thought you might all like the benefit of my new-found wisdom! I actually have 2 recipes here, both of which work equally well, although they taste slightly diffferent. They are both easy, in any case, so it is really a matter of personal taste. One of these recipes has as its basis cashews and tofu, and the other is soya-free and made from pine-nuts. I love the distinctive flavour of the latter nuts, but they can be expensive and are not always easily available, which may make cashews a better option. Either of these can be used in place of normal ricotta, eg in lasagne, and other pasta dishes and desserts. In fact I have an awesome recipe using ricotta that I will share soon, so watch this space!
Recipe 1: Cashew-Tofu Ricotta
Ingredients (Makes about 2 cups)
1/2 cup raw cashews
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic
1/2 block soft tofu
2 tablespoons soy milk
Squirt of lemon
1) In a food processor or industrial blender, combine the cashews, oil and garlic. Blend until finely chopped.
2) Add the tofu, and a pinch of salt. Pulse until finely chopped and resembling the texture of ricotta, add soymilk as needed to thin the mixture out.
3) Add the lemon and blend.
Recipe 2 : Pine-nut Ricotta
Ingredients ( Makes: 2 1/4 cups “ricotta”)
2 cups pine nuts, raw
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1) Soak 2 cups of pine nuts in 4 cups water for at least 1 hour.
2)Drain the pine nuts and add them to a blender with nutritional yeast and lemon juice.
3)Pulse until pine nuts form ricotta like texture. If needed add water to the mixture 1 tablespoon at a time. You want just enough to help the nuts break down but not become watery.
For both types, keep in a covered container and chill in the fridge until needed and use in your favourite recipes.
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