Homemade vegan ravioli is easier than you think, and delicious to boot! Serve it with quick tomato basil sauce for a scrumptious vegan ravioli pomodoro.
Some things seem way more complicated than they are. Agreed? You guys know what I'm taking about. Were you forever impressed by people who made their own hummus, only to discover that it takes all of five minutes? (I was!)
If you're eating vegan, this is a big thing to get over, because learning to make cool stuff yourself opens up a lot of doors with delicious foods behind them. Like vegan ravioli. This was nowhere near as complicated as one would think. It was pretty simple, didn't require any special equipment, and barely trashed the kitchen. (I gauge the complicatedness of most recipes based on the level of kitchen trashing entailed.)
It had been a long time since I attempted homemade pasta, but then I got some inspiration going when I saw this vegan pasta tutorial from Amuse Your Bouche. Sounded easy, and since I've got the whole vegan ricotta thing down pat, I figured why not whip up some of that too, stuff my pasta, and have some vegan ravioli? I loved ravioli in my younger years, so I was pretty enthusiastic about the whole thing.
Also, I'm always all about the tomatoey pasta dishes in the summer, even if the tomatoes come from a can. I might have attempted this with fresh, and feel free to try that if you'd like, but the tomatoes in my garden are still green and tiny. The basil did come from my garden, which is great, because I usually do terrible with herbs.
One of the great things about pomodoro sauce is that's it's undoubtedly easy. Made from minimal ingredients, with a short simmer time, but no less flavorful, the no-fuss sauce makes up for any extra effort you're putting in by making your vegan ravioli from scratch.
Vegan Ravioli Pomodoro
For the Vegan Ravioli Dough
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ cups whole wheat pastry flour, or another 1 ½ cups of all purpose flour - see note
- ¾ tsp. salt
- 1 scant cup water
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1-2 tbsp. cornmeal, for dusting (optional)
For the Filling
- 1 cup raw cashews, soaked in water 4-8 hours, rinsed and drained
- 1 small onion, quartered
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ cup unlfavored soy or almond milk
- 2 tbsp. lemon juice
- ¼ lb. extra firm tofu, drained
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh basil leaves, packed
- ¼ tsp. salt, or to taste
- ¼ tsp. pepper, or to taste
For the Pomodoro Sauce
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 32 oz. diced tomatoes, canned, with juice
- 2 tsp. granulated sugar, whatever type you prefer
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup sliced fresh basil leaves
Make the Vegan Ravioli Dough
Mix flours and salt together in a medium mixing bowl. Add water and olive oil. Mix thoroughly until a dough is formed, adding a bit of water if it seems to dry, more flour if too moist.
Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Lightly rub the surface of dough with olive oil, place into a clean bowl, cover and let it rest for at least 30 minutes.
Make the Filling
While the dough rests, place cashews, onion, garlic, milk, and lemon juice into food processor bowl and blend until relatively smooth (it doesn't have to be perfect). Add tofu and basil and pulse, just until blended but still chunky like ricotta cheese. Season with salt and pepper.
Make the Pomodoro Sauce
Coat the bottom of a large pot with oil and place over medium heat. When oil is hot, add garlic and sauté just until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomatoes and sugar. Bring to a simmer and lower heat. Allow to cook, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes, until the juices are reduced by half or more.
Remove from heat. Stir in basil and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Make the Vegan Ravioli
Divide dough into three equal portions. Place one portion onto floured work surface and roll to a rectangle that's about ⅛ inch thick and at least 4 inches wide. Draw a lengthwise score along the rectangle and place teaspoonfuls of filling about an inch apart, each about an inch below the score (see photo, above). Wet your fingers and lightly moisten the top surface of the dough surrounding the filling dollops. Fold the dough about the score to cover the dollops of filling, pressing to seal around them and form pockets in the dough. Use a knife or scissors to cut the dough into squares around the pockets (or circles, or whatever shape you like). Trim any excess dough and save for rolling with another batch of dough. Optionally, use the tines of a fork to create ridges along the outer edges of each ravioli.
Place each ravioli on a nonstick surface (a sheet of parchment works great), after cutting. Optionally, dust the tops with a bit of cornmeal.
Repeat until all dough and filling is used. You should have about 24-28 ravioli.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and carefully add ravioli. Cook just until they float, about 2-3 minutes. Immediately remove from the pot and drain into a colander. Return to pot and toss with a few dashes of olive oil.
Pour sauce over ravioli immediately prior to serving. Divide onto plates and serve.
I wouldn't recommend using regular whole wheat flour, as your pasta will probably end up gritty. If you go with whole wheat pastry flour, I also strongly recommend using Bob's Red Mill whole wheat pastry flour - it has the best texture of any brand I've used. If you can't get a hold of some, stick with all-purpose flour for the time being. You could probably use other types of flour too. Semolina is great for pasta, and I'm sure there are some gluten-free varieties that will work, but for now, this is all I've tried. I'll update the post as I make future versions with other types of flour.