Pasta and Peas with Fresh Soy Ricotta

This recipe is a take on a dish my Italian grandmother used to make, but with edamame and fresh snap peas that add interesting textures. The creamy sauce is made using homemade soy ricotta cheese —so easy to make! Choose a small pasta that hugs the edamame, like the mini-shell-shaped orecchiette. Finally, adding the aromatics at the end allows them to keep their bright color and flavor while being softened by the residual heat from the pasta.


1 quart plain, unsweetened soy milk

2½ tablespoons white wine vinegar (or white vinegar or apple cider vinegar)

1 pound orecchiette, pipette, or other short pasta

12 ounces sugar snap peas, sliced on the bias

1 package (10 ounces) frozen shelled edamame or English peas

½ small red onion, thinly sliced

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped

Juice of 1 lemon
Fresh ground pepper to taste

  1. First make the soy ricotta. In a medium saucepan, bring the soy milk to a boil, stirring occasionally to avoid burning.
  2. Once the soy milk is boiling, quickly place it into a glass or ceramic bowl and stir in the vinegar. Stir constantly for one full minute and then allow the mixture to sit for 10 minutes. It will start to separate and curdle, which is what you want.
  3. Meanwhile, put a strainer over a bowl and line it with a few layers of cheesecloth. Pour the mixture over the cheesecloth, and cover with the sides of the cheesecloth. Weigh the mixture down with a second bowl and a large can from the pantry for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours. Remove the weight, open the cheesecloth, and place your ricotta cheese into a covered container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
  4. In a large pot of boiling water, cook the pasta according to the package directions. About 3 minutes before the end of the cooking time, add the snap peas and cook for 2 minutes. About a minute before the pasta is finished cooking, add the edamame.
  5. After the pasta is cooked, use a ladle to reserve about 1 cup of the cooking water. Drain the pasta and peas and return them to the pot along with the full recipe of the soy ricotta, onions, garlic, parsley, lemon juice, and about ½ cup of the pasta water. Stir until the pasta is well-coated, adding more pasta water as needed to obtain your preference of sauciness. Season with fresh ground pepper