My family is coming to visit in a few months, so I need to come up with some good meals that can go both ways: vegan but appealing and familiar to non-vegans. In preparation for their visit, I have been scouring Pinterest with the intention of finding some non-vegan comfort food that I can veganize and add to my family-friendly recipe box. Last night I was on the hunt. I found lots of homey comfort food recipes: cheddar beer soup, caramel-studded shortbread, decadent ravioli, and salted chocolate pie just to name a few. But once I laid eyes on the stuffed shells: It was no contest. I knew that I must come up with an easy rendition of stuffed shells to add to my repertoire. Thus began my vegan stuffed shell research to see what other cooks came up with. Here’s the roundup:
The Chubby Vegan wrote about making stuffed shells using the cashew ricotta recipe from Veganomicon. The cashew ricotta sounded delicious. Alas, I had no cashews in my cupboard last night, and I was just too lazy to get to the grocery store. The Zesty Vegan stuffed shell recipe piqued my interest because of its inclusion of spinach. However, it also called for Daiya, and we didn’t have any in the fridge. You know how I feel about unnecessary trips to the grocery store. It was time to move my search forward. The Little Vegan That Could blog features a recipe with spinach, Daiya, seitan, breadcrumbs, and a promising ricotta recipe.
After my research I came up with a combination of the three recipes. The ricotta mixture is probably the most important element. For that I borrowed from the Little Vegan That Could. I made her recipe with firm tofu, Tofutti cream cheese, olive oil, garlic, nutritional yeast, oregano, and salt and pepper. I made sure to include spinach like the Zesty Vegan recipe, but I omitted the seitan, Daiya, and breadcrumbs for simplicity’s sake. However, I would consider adding a veggie crumble or seitan to create more of a Bolognese in the future.
The bottom line is that these shells turned out very well – I think I could sneak these on my family and have a winner! What is your favorite dish that works equally well on vegans and non-vegans alike?