The short asparagus season is almost in its prime. While an asparagus tart or florentine may be off the menu (because we don’t eat eggs or dairy), this plant-based version takes elements of both dishes and is an excellent, delicious alternative.
Giving up eggs and dairy was initially unimaginable and I regularly hear other wholefood plant-based followers (and vegans) say the same. Learning how to use tofu and nuts in place of dairy was a major turning point for me.
I consider tofu-based ricotta and cashew-based yoghurt (which in this case I used as a base for hollandaise) to be plant-based essential recipes. Both these easy recipes can be used as substitutes for many “traditional” animal-based products and recipe components. They contain elements of flavour and texture similar to their traditional versions, so much so that they’ve regularly helped me win over skeptical omnivores and are indispensable for those transitioning to a whole food plant-based lifestyle.
Cashew Hollandaise Sauce
- 1 recipe cashew yoghurt
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- ¼ tsp ground white pepper
- ½ tsp seasalt
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 15ml lemon juice
- 20ml Dijon Mustard
Stir ingredients together.
Note: The colour in the sauce from the turmeric takes time to develop so don’t be tempted to add more, too much makes the sauce grainy and very earthy in flavour.
Tip: All lemons and Dijon mustards will have a slightly different flavour. I suggest adding half of the lemon and Dijon first then tasting your sauce and adding more if you want, a teaspoon at a time if you are unsure. Take note of the amount that works for you and the brand of mustard you used.
- 280g firm tofu
- 7g nutritional yeast
- 2 tbsp minced shallots
- 2 cloves of grated garlic
- ¾ tsp sea salt
- Zest of half a lemon
Crumble tofu and mix in other ingredients, it’s that simple! Adjust seasoning and lemon to suit your tastebuds.
Tip: Add chopped steamed spinach or fresh herbs for extra flavour.
Serving your Asparagus, Tofu-Ricotta with Cashew Hollandaise
3 or 4 Asparagus spears per person – griddled, steamed or blanched (choose your preferred cooking method).
Tart base – store bought vegan puff pastry, cut into your preferred shape and baked according to packet instructions. (This is not a product I regularly use, but it has it’s uses.)
Build your dish from the base upwards, add the tofu-ricotta, arrange the asparagus. Either drizzle with the hollandaise or serve it on the side.