Happy meatless Monday!
Growing up with an Italian American dad resulted in eating a LOT of pasta. I’ve always been a fan of cream sauces with pasta but since going vegan I’ve had to live without butter and cream. I’m so thankful for the many vegan alternatives to meat and dairy nowadays because it makes it way easier to “veganize” dishes.
Here’s a pasta dish I love from Minimalist Baker (all credit for this recipe goes to her*):
“A 30 minute creamy pasta made with almond milk and infused with garlic and roasted tomatoes. Perfect for a quick, weeknight meal and feeding vegan/dairy free friends.”
- 3 cups (450 g) grape tomatoes, halved
- 10 ounces (283 g) whole wheat pasta (such as penne, linguini or fettuccine | Use less if you want a higher sauce:pasta ratio)
- Olive oil
- 2 medium shallots, diced (~1/4 cup or 40 g)
- 8 large cloves garlic, minced/grated (1/4 cup or 24 g)
- Sea salt and black pepper
- 3-4 Tbsp (25-33 g) unbleached all purpose flour (or another thickener of choice)*
- 2 1/2 cups (600 ml) unsweetened plain Almond Breeze (sub up to 1 cup with veggie stock, if preferred)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (204 C) and toss tomatoes in a bit of olive oil and sea salt. Place cut side up on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes while you prepare the rest of the dish. Then set aside.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook pasta according to package instructions. When done, drain, cover and set aside.
- In the meantime, prepare the sauce. In a large skillet over medium-low heat, add 1 Tbsp (15 ml) olive oil and the garlic and shallot. Add a pinch of salt and black pepper and stir frequently, cooking for 3-4 minutes until softened and fragrant.
- Stir in 3-4 Tbsp flour (or other thickener of choice – see notes) and mix with a whisk. Once combined, slowly whisk in the almond milk a little at a time so clumps don’t form. Add another healthy pinch of salt and black pepper, bring to a simmer and continue cooking for another 4-5 minutes to thicken. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. (Optional: You can also add a few shakes of vegan parmesan for extra flavor at this time if you wish.)
- If you want an ultra creamy sauce, transfer sauce to a blender (or use an immersion blender) to blend the sauce until creamy and smooth. Place back in pan and reduce heat to a low simmer until desired thickness is reached.
- Once the sauce is to your desired thickness, taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Then add pasta and roasted tomatoes and stir.
- Serve immediately and garnish with extra black pepper, fresh basil and/or vegan parmesan cheese.
* To keep this recipe gluten free, sub the flour for cornstarch or another thickener. Add 1-2 Tbsp during the blending process to make sure it’s completely blended. Then add back to the pan to thicken for 5-7 minutes. Alternatively, make a slurry with the cornstarch and a few Tbsp of the sauce in a small bowl and then whisk it directly into the pan during the simmering process. Repeat in 1/2 Tbsp amounts until desired consistency is reached.
*Nutrition information reflects 1 of 4 servings.
Serving size: ~1 cup Calories: 379 Fat: 9g Saturated fat: .8g Carbohydrates: 64g Sugar: 5gSodium: 360mg Fiber: 8.5g Protein: 11.5g