Stuffed shells – dairy free!

  • 8 ounces Kite Hill (or other brand / home made) vegan ricotta
  • 1/4 cup almond milk mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh parsley
  • 1 egg, scrambled
  • salt/ pepper to taste
  • cooked sausage, minced into small bits (2 turkey Italian sausages from Whole Foods meat counter)
  • jumbo pasta shells
  • tomato sauce
  • extra mozzarella to sprinkle on top
  1.  Boil pasta until al dente. Run under cool water and set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 400.
  3. In a large bowl, combine: ricotta, mozz cheese, nutmeg, oregano, parsley, egg, salt/ pepper, cooked sausage. Mix well.
  4. Put a layer of pasta sauce into the bottom of a baking dish.
  5.  Stuff shells (not too much) with cheese mixture
  6. Spoon more sauce on top of shells, being careful to cover corners of shells that will otherwise dry out in the oven
  7. Cover with foil and bake for about 20 minutes, until sauce starts to bubble.
  8. Remove foil and bake another 5-10 minutes. Let cool a bit before serving.

 

 

 

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Tempeh “Meatballs”

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Recipe from Minimalist Baker

My only change to the recipe was that I used a real egg instead of a vegan substitute.

Ingredients:
FOR MEATBALLS
  • 1/2 cup white onion, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 flax egg
  • 8 ounces tempeh* (or sub 1 heaping cup rinsed and drained chickpeas for similar result)
  • 1/3 cup vegan parmesan cheese
  • 2 tsp Italian seasonings (or 1/2 tsp each dried basil and oregano)
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley (optional)
  • 1/2 cup vegan bread crumbs (gluten free for GF eaters | or sub almond meal)
  • 2 Tbsp your favorite marinara or tomato sauce
  • Olive Oil for sautéing + Salt and Pepper to taste
FOR COATING
Instructions:
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and prepare flax egg in a small dish.
  2. In a large, deep skillet, sautee onion and garlic in 1/2 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat until soft and translucent – about 3 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Add tempeh to food processor and pulse to break down. Then add sautéd garlic and onion remaining ingredients (except olive oil) and mix, scraping down sides as needed. You want it to form into a moldable “dough.”
  4. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. The tempeh will come across as a little bitter, but once coated, baked and served with marinara it’s not nearly as apparent.
  5. NOTE: Depending on how salty your vegan parmesan cheese is, you may need to add a little salt and pepper at this point. However, I didn’t find it necessary.
  6. Scoop out 1 Tbsp amounts of dough and roll into balls. At this time, heat the same skillet you used earlier to medium heat.
  7. Mix remaining bread crumbs and parmesan cheese together in a shallow dish. Add tempeh balls one or two at a time and roll to coat.
  8. Add enough olive oil to form a thin layer on the bottom of your hot skillet, then add your coated tempeh balls in two batches, as to not crowd the pan. Brown for about 5 minutes total, shaking the pan to roll them around to brown all sides.
  9. Add browned meatballs to a baking sheet and add to the oven to bake for about 15 minutes, or longer if desired for a crispier result.
  10. At this time, prep any pasta your want to serve with your meatballs, as well as your favorite marinara sauce (I love thispizza sauce).
  11. Once meatballs are deep golden brown and fairly firm to the touch, remove from oven.
  12. To serve, top cooked pasta with meatballs and pour over marinara sauce. Top with another sprinkle of vegan parmesan cheese and fresh parsley. Leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to a few days, though best when fresh.

Vegan Mac & Cheese

vegan mac

Recipe adapted from here, here, and here
Ingredients:
  • 2 cups water (!! measure this out, it’s actually important this time!)
  • 1 small sweet potato, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium sweet onion, chopped
  • boiled vegetables from above
  • remaining water from the veggie pot (about 1.5 cups)
  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked for about half a day
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (or 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder)
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • dash of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 pound pasta
Instructions:
  1. In a small pot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add in the sweet potato and onion. Boil for 10-15 minutes, or until everything is soft and can be pierced with a fork. Remove from heat.
  2. In a separate pot, start boiling the water for the pasta. Cook 16 oz. of your favorite pasta, according to directions. Drain and transfer pasta back to pot.
  3. Start making the cheese sauce. Spoon out the boiled vegetables and transfer them to a blender. Add in the remaining boiled water from that pot. Be careful, it’s very hot! Add in rest of the ingredients for the cheese sauce. Blend it up and be sure to let heat out or else it can explode.
  4. Taste test and add in extra salt or pepper, if desired.
  5. Pour the cheese sauce over the pasta. Mix until well combined.

Mini Turkey Meatballs

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Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons sundried tomato pesto
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1/3 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried fennel
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley or basil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400F
  2. Combine everything into a bowl and mix well.
  3. Form small meatballs (about 3/4 to 1 inch in diameter) and place formed meatballs on a large plate
  4. Heat vegetable oil or olive oil on a large pan. Sautee meatballs in pan until browned all over
  5. Place meatballs on foil-lined baking sheet. Cover with another piece of foil
  6. Cook meatballs until they reach 160F.

Quick Bolognese

bolognese with iva bolognese

Recipe adapted from Barefoot Contessa

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons good olive oil, plus extra to cook the pasta
  • 1 pound lean ground sirloin
  • 4 ounces pancetta, diced
  • 1 white onion, diced small
  • 1/4 cup diced carrot
  • 4 teaspoons minced garlic (4 cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/4 cups dry red wine, divided
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, preferably San Marzano
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4 pound dried pasta, such as orecchiette or small shells
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves, lightly packed
  • 1/4 cup almond milk (original recipe called for heavy cream)

Add pancetta to a large pan and turn heat to medium-high.  Add onion and carrots, and stir for about 5 minutes until pancetta releases fat and starts to cook the carrots and onions.  Add the ground sirloin and cook, crumbling the meat with a wooden spoon, for 5 to 7 minutes, until the meat has lost its pink color and has started to brown. Stir in the garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes and cook for 1 more minute. Pour 1 cup of the wine into the skillet and stir to scrape up any browned bits. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper, stirring until combined. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil, add a tablespoon of salt, a splash of oil, and the pasta, and cook according to the directions on the box.

While the pasta cooks, finish the sauce. Add the nutmeg, basil, almond milk, and the remaining 1/4 cup wine to the sauce and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until thickened. When the pasta is cooked, drain and pour into a large serving bowl.

home made pasta/ bolognese sauce

bolognese: fresh pasta

This was INCREDIBLY DELICIOUS. Trust me, the all-caps was warranted here. Sorry I don’t have better pictures, but it took over 3.5 hours to make this meal and we didn’t eat until about 9:30PM. It made a wonderful Valentine’s Day dinner!

BOLOGNESE:

Ingredients:

Original recipe makes 6 servings
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup finely diced onion
  • 1/2 cup finely diced celery
  • 1/2 cup finely diced carrot
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups 2% milk
  • 2 cups white wine
  • 1 (28 ounce) can whole Italian plum tomatoes (preferably San Marzano)
  • 2 cups water, or as needed

Directions:

  1. Melt butter with olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat; cook onion, celery, and carrot with pinch of salt until onion turns translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir ground beef into vegetables and cook, stirring constantly until meat is crumbly and no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Season meat mixture with 1 1/2 teaspoon salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and nutmeg.
  2. Pour milk into ground beef mixture and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring often, until most of the milk has evaporated and bottom of pan is still slightly saucy, about 5 minutes.
  3. Raise heat to medium high and pour white wine into ground beef mixture; cook and stir until white wine has mostly evaporated, about 5 more minutes.
  4. Pour tomatoes with juice into a large mixing bowl and crush them with your fingers until they resemble a slightly chunky sauce. Pour tomatoes into sauce; fill can with 2 cups water and add to sauce. Bring to a simmer.
  5. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring often, until mixture cooks down into a thick sauce, at least 3 hours but preferably 4 to 6 hours. Skim fat from top of sauce if desired. If sauce is too thick or too hot on the bottom, add a little more water. Taste and adjust seasonings before serving.

PASTA:

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces (about 2 cups) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 2 whole large eggs (about 4 ounces)
  • 4 yolks from 4 large eggs (about 2.5 ounces)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for salting water

Procedures

  1. To Make the Dough: On a large, clean work surface, pour flour in a mound. Make a well in the center about 4 inches wide. Pour whole eggs, egg yolks, and salt into well and, using a fork, beat thoroughly. When combined, gradually incorporate flour into the eggs until a wet, sticky dough has formed.

  2. Using a bench knife, scrape excess dough from fork and fingers. Begin to fold additional flour into the dough with the bench knife, turning the dough roughly 45 degrees each time, until dough feels firm and dry, and can form a craggy-looking ball, 2 to 5 minutes.

  3. Press the heel of your hand into the ball of dough, pushing forward and down. Rotate the ball 45 degrees and repeat. Continue until dough develops a smooth, elastic texture similar to a firm ball of Play-Doh. If dough feels too wet, add flour in 1 teaspoon increments. If dough feels too dry, add water slowly using a spray bottle.

  4. Wrap ball of dough tightly in plastic wrap and rest on countertop for 30 minutes.
  5. To Roll the Pasta: Meanwhile, place a sheet of parchment paper on a tray or cutting board and dust lightly with flour. Unwrap rested dough and cut into quarters. Set one quarter on work surface and re-wrap remaining dough. With a rolling pin, flatten the quarter of dough into an oblong shape about 1/2 inch thick.

  6. Set pasta maker to widest setting and pass dough 3 times through the machine at this setting.

  7. Place dough on a lightly floured work surface. Fold both ends in so that they meet at the center of the dough, and then fold the dough in half where the end points meet, trying not to incorporate too much air into the folds. Using rolling pin, flatten dough to 1/2-inch thick. Pass through the rollers 3 additional times.

  8. Narrow the setting by 1 notch and repeat Step 7. Repeat once more (the dough should now have passed through the third widest setting). Continue passing the dough through the rollers, reducing the thickness by 1 setting each time until it reaches the desired thickness. It should now be very delicate and elastic to the touch, and slightly translucent.

  9. Place rolled dough onto a work surface or baking sheet lightly dusted with flour or lined with parchment paper, folding the dough over as necessary so that it fits; sprinkle with flour or line with parchment between folds to prevent sticking.

  10. 10

    Cover dough with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel to prevent drying, then repeat Steps 5 through 9 with remaining dough quarters. If making noodles, cut dough into 12- to 14-inch segments.

  11. 11

    To Cut Noodles: Adjust pasta machine to noodle setting of your choice. Working one dough segment at a time, feed dough through the pasta-cutter. Alternatively, cut folded dough by hand with a chef’s knife to desired noodle width.

  12. 12

    Divide the cut noodles into individual portions, dust lightly with flour, and curl into a nest. Place on parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet and gently cover with kitchen towel until ready to cook. Pasta can be frozen directly on the baking sheet, transferred to a zipper-lock freezer bag, and stored in the freezer for up to three weeks before cooking. Cook frozen pasta directly from the freezer.

  13. 13

    To Cook: Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add pasta, stir gently with a wooden spoon, chopsticks, or a cooking fork, and cook, tasting at regular intervals until noodles are just set with a definite bite, about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Drain, toss with sauce, and serve.

roasted tomato sauce

very simple recipe, made up by me! paul is going to make chicken parm tonight with this.

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start with tomatoes: i think any kind works, or any combination of kinds. just use up what you have or buy whatever from the store!

step 1: preheat oven to ~400-450. half tomatoes on a baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper, drizzle with oil, and generously sprinkle salt and pepper on top. add some minced garlic on top, as well as whatever herbs/ spices you have around. (i put fresh thyme on this time)

step 2: remove pans from oven when tomatoes are caramelized on the bottom and soft/ slightly caramelized on top. let cool for a few minutes, then transfer tomatoes to a food processor. add more fresh herbs (i did basil + more thyme), as well as salt/pepper to taste and about 1/4 teaspoon of sugar. pulse until you reach desired consistency.

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note: i’m going to sauté mushrooms and an onion tonight and add them into the sauce.