Savor the Holidays with Pumpkin Tofu “Ricotta”

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Okay, it’s getting near the holiday season. If your office brought in leftover Halloween candy like mine did, it may have already kicked in. While we can’t declare the office a treat-free zone, we can be more conscious of what we’re eating. And if we’re really nice, we can bring something healthy to the office when it’s our turn.

While I’ve avoided the big tin of cookies that showed up around lunchtime in the kitchen, I’ll have a harder time at goody days. My company actually has one day a week that each department shows off its stuff. That’s a tempt-a-rama for four weeks running in December. Last year I brought fake chicken salad sandwiches on nine-grain bread. And since I neglected to label them, they went like hotcakes. Funny what the word vegetarian does to some people’s idea of how a dish will taste!

This year I’m leaning towards vegan lasagna or stuffed shells. If you are trying to cut down on dairy, or add more soy to your diet, this is a great and tasty way to do it.

Pumpkin Tofu “Ricotta”

1 container tofu (soft or firm)
1 15-ounce can organic pumpkin
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (optional, adds a more cheesy flavor)
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon onion powder (or 1/2 teaspoon onion salt and leave out the extra salt)
2 cloves crushed garlic (or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder)
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 sun-dried tomatoes, re-hydrated (pour boiling water over them and let them sit for a few minutes)
Salt and pepper to taste

In a food processor blend the olive oil and sun-dried tomatoes until you have a paste. (It’s okay if there are still some lumps in it.) Add the rest of the ingredients; blend until creamy. Add a little water if you need to thin the mixture. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Use just like ricotta in lasagna layers or stuff into shells.



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