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VEGAN RICOTTA STUFFED PASTA W/ CREAMY SQUASH SAUCE! by @alexafuelednaturally

RECIPE
10 ounce bag frozen spinach (optional)
Pasta shells
Fresh basil to garnish
Chili pepper flakes

Vegan ricotta:
2 tbsp olive oil
1 (14 ounces) container firm tofu
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp salt
4 tbsp nutritional yeast
1/2 tbsp garlic powder

Creamy squash sauce:
1 small onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups cubed butternut squash (you can use fresh or frozen to make things faster)
1/2 cup raw cashews
1 1/2 cups filtered water
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 1/2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp salt
Ground pepper to taste

Instructions:
1. Preheat oven to 375. Soak 1/2 cup cashews in hot water for at least 10 minutes.
Make the sauce! Cook the cubed butternut squash by steaming for 10 minutes or boiling until fork tender. In a pan sauté onions and garlic in 1 tbsp of oil for 4 minutes.
In a blender add the cashews (discard water) then add in 1 1/2 cups filtered water… blend on high till smooth, then add in cooked onions and garlic and cooked butternut squash. Blend till smooth then add in the remain sauce ingredients. Spread half the amount of sauce in a baking dish.

2. Remove tofu from package and wrap tofu block in 2 paper towels. Squeeze for 10 seconds then break apart tofu into your food processor. To the food processor add salt, 2 tbsp olive oil, lemon juice, nutritional yeast and garlic powder. Pulse 6-10 times until you reach the consistency of ricotta cheese. Taste and adjust salt and seasonings as needed.

3. In a pan add frozen spinach and season with a small pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes …Remove from pan and add to ricotta. I pulsed 3-4 times into the ricotta.

4. Once pasta shells are cooked, drain then immediately drizzle with olive oil so they don’t stick together. spoon in ricotta mixture into each pasta shell. Place in the prepared skillet with the sauce; repeat with remaining pasta shells & filling.

5. Place in oven and bake

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