Artichoke Ricotta Tortellini with Saffron Cream Sauce

6 servings – Prep time: 2 hours
Ingredients for the pasta dough:
4 ounces silken tofu
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon red palm oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 cups semolina flour, plus more for dusting
Ingredients for the filling:
Sea salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 (14-ounce) can of artichoke hearts, drained and roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 cups regular Cashew Cream
1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
Freshly ground black pepper
Ingredients for the saffron cream sauce:
Sea salt
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 small shallot, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup regular Cashew Cream
2 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
Pinch of saffron threads
Freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoons Earth Balance
Ingredients for serving:
6 cups fresh baby arugula
4 plum tomatoes cut into thin wedges, seeds and inner flesh removed
Make the Pasta Dough
Place the tofu, olive oil, red palm oil, 2 tablespoons cold water, and the salt in a food processor or blender and blend on high for 1 minute.
If using a food processor – Gradually add the flour, 1/2 cup at a time, to the tofu mixture and pulse to combine, adding more water if necessary to make a smooth dough. Once combined, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for 5-10 minutes, or transfer to a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook and knead on low speed for 5 minutes.
If using a blender, set the tofu mixture aside and mound the flour on a work surface. Make a well in the middle of the flour and pour the tofu mixture into the well. Using a fork or your fingers, begin to incorporate the flour into the tofu mixture, starting at the inner rim of the well. Keep using the flour up from the base to retain the well shape. When the dough comes together, push aside any loose scraps or excess flour and knead the dough for 5-10 minutes, pulling in extra flour or adding a bit more water if needed to form a firm, springy dough. Wrap in plastic wrap and let it rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Make the filling
Place a sauté pan over medium heat. Sprinkle the bottom with a pinch of salt and heat for 1 minute. Add the oil and heat for 30 seconds, being careful not to let it smoke.
Add the artichoke hearts and garlic and sauté for 2-3 minutes, until the garlic is softened. Deglaze the pan with the wine and cook until almost all the wine has evaporated. Add the Cashew Cream and stir well. Add the nutritional yeast, season with salt and pepper to taste, and stir. Cook for about 10 minutes, until thickened. Pulse the artichoke mixture in a food processor until a texture similar to that of ricotta is achieved.
Assemble the pasta
Pull off a small piece of pasta dough. Rewrap the remaining dough in the plastic wrap and return it to the refrigerator. Set a pasta machine on its widest setting and press the dough through the machine 2-3 times. Pull the dough as it emerges from the machine to form a more uniform rectangle, and dust with flour as needed. Reduce the machine setting and run the dough through 2-3 more times. Continue tightening the setting and running the dough through until the machine is on the narrowest setting.
Lay the dough on a work surface. Using a 3-inch ring mold or round cutter, cut circles out of the dough. Place 1 teaspoon of the artichoke filling in the center of each circle. Fold the dough over the filling, pressing to seal the edges, and b end into a circular tortellini shape. Place on a lightly floured baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling.
Make the saffron cream sauce  
Place a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Sprinkle the bottom with a pinch of salt and heat for 2 minute. Add the oil and heat for 30 seconds, being careful not to let it smoke.
Add the shallot and sauté for 2-3 minutes, being careful not to let it brown. Add the wine and cook until it has reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Whisk in the Cashew Cream, nutritional yeast, and saffron and cook for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from the heat. Whisk in the Earth Balance 1 tablespoon at a time.
Cook and serve the tortellini
Fill a large pot with water and 1 teaspoon salt and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the tortellini, return the water to a boil, and cook for 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the tortellini to the pan with the saffron cream sauce and pile the arugula and tomato wedges on top. Gently toss over low heat to heat through and serve immediately.
This recipe is a sample from "The Conscious Cook" by Tal Ronnen. For more amazing recipes from Tal Ronnen, click here.