Truth be told, I served this dish with a side of grilled flank steak, lol! I am NOT vegan, (obviously!!) but I’m also not against trying something new! I found this recipe in Food & Wine magazine when the picture caught my attention. As I read on, I knew I needed to give it a go! Using nutritional yeast as a cheese substitute is something I am familiar with and as expected it didn’t disappoint! This light yet creamy, herby (thanks, Tarragon) vegan pasta dish loaded with fresh veggies is sure to please even your hard core carnivores! Oh and the toasted Panko crumbs make this dish so don’t skip that step! Enjoy!!
Gwen, this one’s for you 😉 XO
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
- 3 tbsp garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 cup unsweetened nut milk*
- 2/3 cup pignoli nuts
- 5 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1/2 cup panko crumbs
- 1 1/2 cups carrots, slice don the diagonal
- 2 cups asparagus, chopped tips and stems
- 1 cup frozen peas, defrosted
- 1 lb casarecce (or similiar tube shaped pasta)
- 1 tbsp fresh tarragon, chopped
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- Meanwhile in a large saucepan, heat 2 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat. Sauté onions and 2 tbsp garlic until onions begin to soften and turn translucent (5-8 min).
- Transfer onions and garlic to a blender. Add nut milk, pignoli nuts and 3 tbsp of nutritional yeast, 1 tsp of salt and the pepper. Process until blended and set aside.
- In the same saucepan, heat the remaining oil. Add 1 tbsp garlic and sauté until fragrant (1 min). Add the panko and the rest of the nutritional yeast. Cook, stirring frequently, until panko is toasted (2-3 min). Remove from heat and set aside.
- Once water boils, add veggies and blanch for 3 minutes. Remove veggies with a slotted spoon, rinse with cold water and set aside.
- Bring water back to a boil and cook pasta according to package directions. Drain but reserve 1/2 cu of pasta water.
- Return cooked pasta to the pot, add the veggies, sauce from Step 3 and the fresh tarragon. Toss to coat, adding pasta water to thin if necessary. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if desired.
- Sprinkle pasta with a generous amount of panko crumbs and serve immediately!
*Original recipe called for Macadamia or Cashew milk but I couldn’t find any so I used Hazelnut! Just make sure, whatever you use, that it it is unsweetened!!