When we transitioned into a whole food plant based diet, the most challenging thing for my husband was doing without creamy food. When we met, he loved carbonara, Alfredo sauce, anything saucy and creamy. Through the years he’s weaned off that, and now totally when he changed his diet. I know my kids miss it too, although they never had too much of it. After my consultation with plant based doctor and paediatrician, Yami Lancaster whose lessons I listened to on my Plant based nutrition course, I got the idea to make an Alfredo sauce.
My husband and I consulted Yami specifically for support on how to raise healthy, thriving kids on a plant based diet. She suggested using sauces with cashew cream to increase the good fat and calories active kids need. To create this dish, was not a problem as the ingredients were all in my pantry anyway and readily available. When I poured the creamy sauce on the pasta, I knew it would be a hit. Try varying the sauce by adding veggies of your choice, or even vegan meat replacements if you need it to be heartier for your kids or hungry family! This sauce is OIL FREE! Meaning the only fat in this dish is from the cashews which are a completely whole food!
- 1 small onion
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 cup cashews, soaked overnight
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1/2 to 2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1/4 cup basil, roughly chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- 5 shiitake mushrooms sliced lengthwise
- or 8 button mushrooms sliced lengthwise
- or 8 oyster mushrooms , sliced lengthwise
Soak the mushrooms in the water. If using dried mushrooms, soak these for an hour.
Save the water to be used for the sauce.
Heat up a pan on high.
Add the garlic cloves and onions and sear till they brown. Put them in a blender.
Boil water for the pasta. When ready, add the pasta and boil for a couple of minutes. After two minutes, scoop out 1/4 cup of the pasta water and add to the blender.
Continue boiling pasta, drain and set aside when ready. Save the pasta water.
Add the cashews, nutritional yeast, salt, almond milk to the blender. Blend till creamy.
Heat up a pan. When hot, add some of the pasta water or water you soaked the mushrooms in. Add the mushrooms and simmer till tender.
Add the Alfredo sauce to the mushrooms and stew for two minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Turn the heat on low. Add the pasta and combine well.
Portion and serve. Garnish with chopped basil.