James and I traveled into Comox for our second jab on Thursday and were feeling almost giddy at the idea that the world (or at least our world) might be getting back to normal sometime soon.
We were reminded, however, on our trip back to Denman that everyone is currently traveling within Canada for their holidays this summer–mostly by car and mostly (it seems) to Hornby Island.
And here’s the thing: they have to cross Denman Island to GET to Hornby Island. So, after our vaccine appointment, we arrived in Buckley Bay at 4:05PM for the 5:00PM ferry.
There was no way we were getting on the five.
The ferry lineup was already almost out to the highway. And BC is currently experiencing a heatwave, so it was stinking hot. We reminded ourselves that for two months of the year, we need to be strategic about our trips off island.
Especially THIS summer.
We did eventually get onto the ferry, onto the island, and back to Sideways Cottage. And we WERE able to combine our appointment with a nice lunch at Brown’s in Courtenay and a bit of a grocery shop where we picked up pasta shells for this dish, which I’ve been dying to make for the past couple of months.
So here we go….
Vegan Pasta Shells
First, make the ricotta.
Blend in the food processor:
- 1/4 cup almond flour
- 1/4 cup fresh oregano/basil leaves
- 12 ounces traditional firm tofu (squeeze as much water out as you can beforehand)
- 1 TBS tahini
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 1 TBS lemon juice
- 2 TBS vegan chicken broth powder
- freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1/4 cup vegan parmesan
- 1 clove garlic
Move the contents of the food processor to a bowl and add:
- 2 thinly sliced shallots, sauteed
- 2 portobello mushrooms, sauteed
Boil twenty large pasta shells until they are al dente. You will need only sixteen or so, but some will break, so it’s nice to have a few extras.
Now, normally, I would make my own marinara sauce for the next step, and, if I did, I would use this recipe. However, Johnny alerted me to The Best Jarred Pasta Sauce There Ever Was, and it is indeed SO tasty that I used it on our stuffed shells:
Pour about a cup of the sauce on the bottom of a 13×9 baking dish, and stuff each shell with a couple of tablespoons of the ricotta, and pour the rest of the jar on top.
And the song of the day is Gregory Alan Isakov’s “Unwritable Girl”–such a sad, pretty song: