Friday, November 27, 2009

Mac'n'Cheez Vegan Style

I am always promising The Husband (@isitvegan) that I will write up and post some of the recipes that he posts about on Twitter. I'm finally resolved to do it, so I'm starting with some Holiday recipes. Hope you enjoy!

This is a great casserole-style dish that is quick and easy for a weeknight, or can be jazzed up and brought to a potluck. I've served this to my cheese-loving family and they really enjoyed it. I typically make it with whole wheat pasta, but since going on the gluten free experiment I've been using rice pasta and it's just as good.

16 oz of pasta (I prefer fusilli, mostly because of Fusilli Jerry)
- Cook according to the package directions. Reserve 1/2 Cup of the cooking water before draining.

Cheez Sauce:
1/4 Cup Soy Sauce
1 Cup Plain Soy Milk
1/4 Cup olive oil
1 Cup of Nutritional Yeast
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne

1. Whisk together these ingredients in a medium sized pyrex measuring pitcher.

2. Drain the pasta (remembering to reserve about 1/2 Cup of the pasta water) and then immediately add the pasta back into the warm pot. Turn the heat off.

3. Add the wet mixture over the pasta and mix. Usually this will work just fine, but occasionally the sauce will be a bit thick or a bit thin. Add the pasta water if it's too thick and sticky. If the sauce is too thin, turn the heat to med-low and keep stirring until the sauce is thicker and a better consistency.

Add any spice/flavor combination you like. Sometimes I add miso, or lemon pepper, or smoked paprika might be nice.

Add a vegetable. Some ideas: caramelized onions, sauteed mushrooms, roasted butternut squash cubes, frozen peas, broccoli florets....

Baked: Another option is to add that pasta water to the pot, place this in a casserole dish or individual ramekins, and sprinkle with some vegan bread crumbs that are drizzled with olive oil. Then bake or broil for a few mins until the top is nice and crunchy.

I usually serve this with something green, either steamed broccoli or sauteed collards, spinach or kale.

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