Vegan Ricotta Ravioli with Asparagus Walnut Pesto
This was a very special dinner we enjoyed. It is not really as difficult to make as it appears and is well worth the trouble.
Yield: 20 large ravioli
for the ravioli dough:
- 1 cup semolina flour
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup water
- pinch salt
for the ricotta filling:
- 1 cup soy yogurt
- 1 cup tofu, crumbled
- pinch salt
- pinch nutmeg
- splash lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast (optional)
- small handful of chopped fresh basil (optional)
for the asparagus walnut pesto:
- 1 lb. fresh green asparagus
- 1 cup walnuts
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 lime, zest and juice
- 1/2 ripe avocado
- dash cayenne pepper
- salt and pepper to taste
to make the pasta dough:
- Using a food processor, put the flour and salt in.
- Add the olive oil and pulse the food processor until the mixture is small crumbs.
- Slowly add the water and pulse until it forms a ball of dough.
- Allow the dough to “rest” for 15 minutes or so before using.
to make the filling:
- Put the soy yogurt in a medium sized bowl.
- Add the crumbled tofu and spices.
- Mix with a fork, allowing a roughly lumpy mixture. If your mixture is too runny, you can add a bit more nutritional yeast, or a few dry bread crumbs.
- Season to taste.
to prepare the ravioli:
- Pull a small handful of dough from the ball of dough and roll out on a lightly floured surface.
- Lightly impress your ravioli form on the surface to indicate where to put the filling.
- Roll out a second piece of dough to form the top.
- Place a spoonful of filling in the center of each impression, then carefully lay the top sheet of dough on top.
- Gently press around the mounds with your finger, then using your ravioli form, cut out the entire ravioli.
- Lay on a lightly floured plate to dry, and wait or cooking. Continue making the ravioli until all the dough and filling has been used. I was able to make 20 large round ravioli from the recipe.
to make the pesto:
- Clean the asparagus, and cut the hard woody end off.
- Slice the asparagus in pieces and either steam or blanche al dente.
- Reserve about 1/2 of the nicest, prettiest pieces of asparagus with tips to used whole I the pesto.
- Place the rest of the asparagus pieces in a blender.
- Add the avocado, lime juice, zest and garlic, and pulse to a smooth consistency.
- Add the walnuts and once again pulse.
- Add the salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. Season to your preference of taste.
- When the pesto has been made, place it in a small saucepan.
- Add most of the asparagus pieces, reserving a few as garnish.
- Keep the pesto warm on a low heat.
to make the ravioli:
- Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boil.
- Add 4 or 5 ravioli to the pot and cook until they float.
- Remove with a slotted spoon and place in a bowl.
- Cook the next batch of ravioli.
- Serve the ravioli with the asparagus pesto and a few pieces of asparagus as garnish.