And yet when I was cooking this for Christmas, everyone rolled their eyes and furrowed their brows as I spoke the word... Even my own Jewish-American mother. "Oh! You mean Manigot!"
However you choose to say it, I don't really care. I missed it. So go home and start making gravy.
4 cloves of garlic, smashed thoroughly
2 cloves of garlic, microplaned or thoroughly obliterated to a paste
1 onion, diced fine
2 32oz cans of tomatoes, crushed
1 tbsp salt
crushed pepper to taste (I like 2 tbsp)
In a large sauce pan or stock pot, heat a generous amount of olive oil, maybe 5 tbsp. When the oil shimmers, add the garlic and make sure its golden brown on all sides. If you are adding crushed red pepper, add it now, and as soon as the perfume of the chilis hits your nose, add your finely diced onions (The finer the dice the better, you don't want onion chunks in your gravy). Sweat the onions for 4-6 minutes over medium heat, or until they soften and start to turn golden. Lower the heat to medium low, and add the crushed tomatoes. In 15 minutes the tomato sauce should come up to a simmer. Double check that the heat is medium low, and that nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pot, and let the sauce simmer for an hour and a half. Afterward, season with salt and microplane in two cloves of garlic. Turn off the heat.
Ricotta (good ricotta) is milk curds held in cream stasis. When it is used in cooking the fatty emulsion of the cream keeps the ricotta moist and fluffy. All too often when I have a tofu ricotta lasagna, the opposite is true, and the resulting filling is crumbly and sort of desiccating on the tongue. So for good tofu ricotta, the same laws have to be in effect; the tofu curds need to be bathed in a fatty milk or cream.
2 cloves garlic, microplaned
2 packs of firm tofu, drained and crumbled
1 cup of cashews
4 tbsp nutritional yeast
2 tsp salt
1 lemon, juiced
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cup almond milk
1/2 package of Daiya cheese
As in baking, we start with a wet mix. Put the cashews, salt, and nutritional yeast in a food processor and grind to a fine powder. Now add the almond milk, olive oil, and the microplaned garlic. Puree the mixture until it is well emulsified. Next, add the crumbled tofu, and the lemon juice. Remove the mixture to a bowl, and mix in the Daiya cheese with a spoon. Put the mixture in a piping bag with a wide nozzle if you have them. Otherwise, a spoon will work fine.
Boil water, and cook your dried manicotti for 6 minutes. Drain the water and space the pasta out to cool on a cookie sheet. Once cool to the touch, stuff the pasta with the ricotta filling. I like to use a piping bag for this job, but it works just fine with a spoon. Line two 13/9 inch baking pans with parchment paper, or ladle 1/4 cup of water into each and drizzle with olive oil (if you use water, add a pinch or two of salt). Lay the manicotti in the baking pan in neat rows, and cover each piece with gravy. Scatter a half a bag of Daiya over each pan, and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Raise the heat to 425 and cook for another 15.
I like to serve with a chiffonade of fresh basil and some bread crumbs (Use the croutons from the ribollita recipe. Toss them in the blender. They are perfect for this.)
|Chickpea & Olive's Manicotti|