Grilled Italian Chicken Pita w/ the BEST Vegan Ricotta (DF, Nut-Free)

EDIT 1

“I received free samples of Toufayan Pita mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by Toufayan Bakeries and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”

Guys get ready for this. Today we have an amazing recipe to share with all of you. Thanks to Toufayan Bakery, we have created an amazing Italian Deli Inspired Pita Sandwich!

Edit 3

Our Toufayan package arrived just a few days before our birthday in a huge cardboard box – probably one of the most exciting moments of this year to date. For those of you are are unfamiliar with Toufayan Bakeries – they are family-owned bakery based in the U.S. and one of the largest Pita companies here.  What I love about their pita bread is the fact that there are so many varieties of flavors suited to many different tastebuds and diets; not mention also naturally cholesterol and trans fat free. Inside the box was an incredible selection of pita breads:

Garlic, Sweet Onion, Sprouted Wheat, Oat Bran, Multigrain, Low-Carb, Whole Wheat, White Pita.

Edit 6

Zoe and I were super excited to put together this pita sandwich! Each of their pita bread is perfectly portioned so that one can enjoy a satisfying sandwich with a large helping of your choice of vegetables and protein. Another bonus is that I don’t have to worry about my sandwich fillings falling out as I carry it around.

The particular recipe takes inspiration from the classic flavors of Italy. We paired a juicy, char grilled lemon-herby chicken with roasted red bell peppers, crisp salad and a creamy vegan ricotta spread. It may not be your everyday peanut butter and jelly sandwich but it is a healthy, filling gourmet sandwich that is fantastic for a DIY pita picnic, brunch or even a packed lunch.

Every part of this sandwich is as delectable and tasty as it looks and sounds. But honestly the best, best best part of the sandwich? Wait for it…is our delicious”goat cheese-like” creamy tofu ricotta. Yes, I just said tofu.

Growing up in Hong Kong ricotta was extremely expensive. We enjoyed ricotta only at Italian restaurants or very occasionally at home. It’s gooey, dreamy richness simply could not be replicated with pre-grated packaged cheese. Unfortunately it is also very pricey. Whenever we had time, Zoe and I would run down to our international supermarket to check the items listed for sale. We would simply wait and wait until the tub of ricotta was on sale – then stock up our fridge with this heavenly cheese.

On the other hand, tofu was such a readily available ingredient found almost at every meal on our Chinese dinner table. Fresh, frozen, silken, firm, semi-firm – you name it – is sold  at grocery stores or fresh wet markets all over Hong Kong. Local street vendors cluttered alongside the busy roads would sell fresh seafood, vegetables, meats and also tofu just for a couple of dollars. Who could have thought that such a cheap and nutritious ingredient would have so much potential for deliciousness?

Tofu is such a great carrier of flavor since it absorbs almost anything you add to it. Made from soybeans it is a great source of protein, naturally dairy free and very low in fat. Zoe and I have made nut cheeses and milk-based cheese sauces but none could compare to the authenticity of this tofu ricotta. After experimenting with this tofu cheese several times over the past few years this has become one of our favorite vegan recipes of all time.

Edit 7

The funniest thing is Zoe and I have never served this tofu ricotta to any vegans or vegetarians. Every guest that has eaten this never suspected it was not real cheese until we told them. They were gobsmacked (including my Asian parents who thought this absolutely delicious)! We’ve used in this in multiple recipes, including dolloping this tofu ricotta on our chickpea pizza (picture below); stuffing it in our eggplant rollatini (recipe coming soon). This honestly never fails to impress.

Edit Chickpea Pizza 17

BEST THING IS: This tofu ricotta can be made in SECONDS. Just throw everything in the blender OR mash it up by hand and voila it is done. It is so versatile you can easily change up the herbs and add in spinach or pesto! You can serve this on bread, on salads, layered in lasagnas, on top of pastas, soups or in place of hummus or mayo on sandwiches. For this Italian Deli Pita, the tofu ricotta is a must.

Vegans: You can serve this with any filling of your choice and this will still be a delicious vegetarian pita sandwich. Remember NEVER to skimp on the tofu ricotta! This pita sandwich is extremely forgiving as long as you use have a slice of fluffy pita bread and tofu ricotta.

Ingredients – serves 2

  • 2 Toufoyan Garlic Pita Bread, halved (See more of their Varieties)
  • Assorted Salad Leaves
  • Roasted Red Bell Pepper (store brought or home-made)
  • Fresh Basil

Italian Grilled Chicken: (adapted from Recipetineats)

  • 2 chicken thighs, boneless and skinless (or breast)
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp Italian mixed herbs (rosemary, oregano, basil)
  • black pepper
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp honey

Tofu Ricotta Spread: (this portion will be enough for 4 pita sandwiches)

  • 6 oz Firm Tofu
  • 1.5 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 1/4 tbsp miso paste
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced

How to Make:

CHICKEN:

  1. Mix the mustard, lemon juice, herbs, salt, pepper, honey together in a ziplock bag/bowl. Cut a few slits in your chicken thighs and set in the marinade for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Heat up your grill pan. Carefully lower your chicken and grill on each side for 3 minutes or till cooked through. Alternatively you can bake this, fry this or broil the chicken in the oven.

TOFU RICOTTA:

  1. Pat the tofu dry. Weigh it down with a plate or something heavy (like a book). Let it sit for 20 minutes until most of the water is squeezed out.
  2. Add all the ingredients into your blender and blitz till mixed well. Taste and adjust seasoning. (NO BLENDER? Just mash up your tofu with a fork, finely chop your basil before mixing everything together.)

To assemble:

  1. Warm up your pita bread in the toaster. Cut them in half and open up the flap. Spread a thick layer of tofu ricotta.
  2. Slice up your chicken and them in on top of the cheese.
  3. Add in your salad leaves and roasted red pepper bell pepper.
  4. Add as much and as little as you want of each ingredient – it is totally up to you!

EDIT 3

LOVE,

Zoe & Mia

As the first and only recipe challenge founded by registered dietitians, The Recipe ReDux aims to inspire the food lover in every healthy eater and inspire the healthy eater in every food lover. Thank you for visiting. We hope you enjoy!

(Please note that this is a closed link-up for Recipe ReDux posts only. Any links added to this collection for non-ReDux posts will be deleted.)

recipe-redux-linky-logo

(This post is featured on Twinkly TuesdayHearth and SoulWeekend PotluckTraffic Jam Weekend Our Mini Link PartyMoonlight & Mason Jars)

Advertisements

8 Comments Add yours

  1. teaspoonofspice says:

    Would never think to make vegan ricotta as I love regular ricotta as is but you make it look and sound so good!

    Like

    1. zoelaucy says:

      Thank you!!!! 🙂 I hope you get to try it someday 🙂 It is such a great healthy, inexpensive alternative to regular ricotta! Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

  2. This looks yummy! So detailed too! Thanks for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

    Like

    1. zoelaucy says:

      Thank you so much!!

      Like

  3. What a wonderful idea to make vegan ricotta! Those Pitas look amazing, and I love what you have made with them. Your Grilled Italian Chicken Pita looks so pretty and so tasty too! Thank you for sharing this post with us at Hearth and Soul, ladies! Featuring it at the link party later today. Hope to ‘see’ you there!

    Like

    1. zoelaucy says:

      Thanks April! We are excited to be featured! Can’t wait for it! Thank you again so so much for all your love and support!

      Like

  4. L says:

    Looks good, what kind of miso paste did you use?

    Like

    1. zoelaucy says:

      Thanks! We use gluten free white miso paste!

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s