This coming Monday is Thanksgiving here in Canada, which means that this week in local supermarket you can't swing a Matt & Nat purse without knocking over a display of pumpkin puree (I may have stolen and slightly modified that quote from an old guilty pleasure of mine - Sex and the City).
I really should have just made puree out of one of the thirty million squashes I have stockpiled, but dealing with whole pumpkins can be such a pain and my sanity is worth more than the $1.99 it cost for the can of puree.
This recipe comes from Veganomicon and I was a bit wary of it at first, as I don't really care for tofu takes on cheeses (ricotta, feta, etc.) and I'd never had pumpkin with pasta before. But it's fall, and by the time I reached the third pumpkin puree display in the supermarket I figured the universe was trying to tell me something.
Although the ingredients list is a bit lengthy and you have to make a few things prior to making the actual meal (the cashew/tofu ricotta, caramelized onions and the sage breadcrumb mixture), it comes together in the casserole dish relatively quickly.
Cashew/tofu ricotta with pumpkin puree, brown sugar and herbs/spices mixed in.
The only complaint I have with this recipe is the enormous amount of breadcrumbs required - about 2 1/2 cups. When all was said and done there were more breadcrumbs than there was pasta. However, this is probably because I used the premade breadcrumbs that I had kicking around my freezer. For this recipe, the authors encourage processing old bread in a food processor until it is coarse but not too fine, whereas my breadcrumbs were practically a powder. If you make this and decide to use store bought breadcrumbs, I'd cut the sage breadcrumb portion of the recipe in half.
The recipe is found in Veganomicon (listed as Baked Pumpkin ziti), but someone has also posted it here. It's quickly become one of our fall favourites. It would make an awesome side dish for Thanksgiving dinner, if you're still looking for harvest meal ideas!