Monday, 9 June 2014

5 Quick and Easy Pasta Recipes with Homemade Vegan Parmesan

5 Quick and Easy Vegan Parmesan based Pasta Recipes
So, I mentioned back when I posted the Creamy Almond Feta, Tomato and Basil Shells recipe that I would start posting all my easy pasta recipes that I used to deem too simple to post AND I promised you some pasta recipes that call for the homemade vegan parmesan, so...here they are! All these recipes only take as long to prepare as the pasta takes to boil, perfect for a quick mid-week dinner or a quick lunch. 


~Recipe Notes~

• A note on cooking pasta which may seem like basic information but it's often overlooked. It's so important that you salt the water well, what you want to be doing really is seasoning the pasta from the inside out so to speak. After years of just throwing some salt in the pot and ending up with either too salty pasta or really bland pasta I've finally gotten a formula I find works perfect: 1 tsp of salt for every 500ml of water. All of these recipes call for 100g of pasta which I find cooks well in 1 litre of water so I add 2 tsp of salt to the water. Just remember that you can't use the pasta water when you do it this way though as the water is too salty to add to a dish :-)

• Since all the recipes call for 2 Tbsp of the vegan parmesan I'll also give you the instructions to make up just that amount here in case you don't have a jar of the parmesan made up to save you having to go back to the vegan parmesan post all the time :-)

To make 2 Tbsp Vegan Parmesan:
1 Tbsp nutritional yeast, finely ground
1 Tbsp ground almonds, or "almond meal"
⅛ tsp salt.....and just mix it all up!


All recipes serve one generously.
Vegan Buttery Parmesan Pasta
This is basically the base recipe for all of these recipes but I do also love it all on it's own. Honestly, this has replaced macaroni and cheese as my big comfort bowl of creamy pasta of choice :-) Any small pasta shape is nice here, as are noodles like fettuccine or spaghetti. 

Buttery Parmesan Pasta

100g pasta, I've used De Cecco 'Gnochetti Sardi' here
1 Tbsp vegan butter
2 Tbsp of vegan parmesan
freshly ground black pepper
splash of hot water

Boil the pasta in 1 litre of water with 2 tsp salt. Drain and tip into a bowl. (Don't return it to the pot as re-heating it will dry it all out.) Add the butter and toss with the pasta until it melts then toss in the parmesan. If it's a little thick, add a splash of hot water to loosen it up, you shouldn't need more than half a tablespoon. Top with some freshly ground black pepper and some more vegan parmesan. 
Vegan Buttery Parmesan Pasta
Orzo with Black Olives, Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Vegan Parmesan
Another favourite is this orzo dish which is also one of the very few places I actually prefer dried basil to fresh. There is really no comparing fresh and dried basil - they are different products altogether and in this dish, dried works best :-)

Orzo with Black Olives, Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Vegan Parmesan

100g orzo
20g (8 whole) black olives, chopped
20g (3 whole) sun-dried tomatoes in oil, chopped
10g vegan butter (2 tsp)
2 Tbsp vegan parmesan
¼ tsp garlic granules
¼ tsp dried basil
5 grinds black pepper
Splash of hot water

Boil orzo according to package instructions in 1 litre of water and 2 tsp of salt. Drain, return to pot with the butter, olives, tomatoes, parmesan and seasoning. Heat on low heat, stirring just until butter melts. Add a splash of hot water to loosen and make it a bit creamy, I usually add about a tablespoon. Serve with extra parmesan sprinkled on top. 
Orzo with Black Olives, Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Vegan Parmesan
Vegan Lemon Parmesan Spaghetti
I have always loved a basic lemon pasta, this is pretty much how I used to make it with vegetarian parmesan before being vegan and I love this vegan version just as much.

Zesty Lemon Parmesan Spaghetti

100g spaghetti
10g vegan butter (2 tsp)
2 Tbsp vegan parmesan
¼ tsp garlic granules or powder
6-7 grinds freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp lemon zest
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp hot water
*optional veg - see note below

Boil spaghetti in 1 litre of water and 2 tsp salt. Mix the vegan parm, garlic, lemon zest and pepper. Drain pasta and return to the pot but turn the heat off. Add the butter and toss until melted. Add the seasoned parmesan and mix until well blended. Add a splash of hot water just to loosen the mixture up and make a sort of creamy sauce. 

*Green veg would go nicely in this: peas, asparagus, broccoli or zucchini for example. For the peas, asparagus or broccoli I would just add to the pasta water with a few minutes left. For the zucchini I would slice and halve the slices and sauté them in a little olive oil then just stir into the pasta at the end.
Vegan Lemon Parmesan Spaghetti

Spring Vegetable Pasta with Asparagus, Green Beans, Petite Pois, Chives, Dill and Vegan Parmesan.
For this one I've added crisp spring like vegetables of asparagus, green beans and petite pois and added fresh dill and chives. It's gorgeous :-) I usually make this with orzo but was out of it so used the gnocchetti sardi again but any small pasta shape will do the trick :-) You should use a pasta size similar to that of the veg in this for the best result.
Spring Vegetable Pasta with Asparagus, Green Beans, Petite Pois, Chives, Dill and Vegan Parmesan.

Spring Vegetable Pasta:

100g orzo or other small pasta shape
30g green beans, chopped into ½" pieces
30g petite pois
30g asparagus, chopped into ½" pieces
1 Tbsp vegan butter 
2 Tbsp vegan parmesan 
¼ tsp garlic granules
⅛ tsp dried dill or about 1/2 Tbsp fresh, chopped fine
1 Tbsp chopped fresh chives
5 grinds black pepper
1 or 2 Tbsp hot water

Boil pasta according to package instructions in 1 litre of water with 2 tsp of salt. Add the green beans, asparagus and petite pois with 4 minutes remaining. Drain, return to pot with the butter, parmesan, chives and seasoning. Heat on low heat, stirring until butter melts. Add a splash or two of hot water to loosen and make it a bit creamy. Serve with extra parmesan to sprinkle on top and some black pepper. Spring Vegetable Pasta with Asparagus, Green Beans, Petite Pois, Chives, Dill and Vegan Parmesan.
Tomato, Basil and Garlic Fusilli with Vegan Parmesan
I've been making this simple pasta dish for YEARS, when I started making it back in the vegetarian days I would always stir in parmesan at the end so I am very happy to have a tasty vegan parmesan that works in it!

I often whip this up in the summer for a quick light dinner, it's especially good with fresh from the garden tomatoes, onion, garlic and basil :-) 
Tomato, Basil and Garlic Fusilli with Vegan Parmesan

Tomato and Basil Fusilli

100g fusilli or rotini
2 medium tomatoes, cored and diced (about 180g)
1 large clove of garlic, finely chopped
¼ cup onion, diced small
1 Tbsp olive oil, split
¼ cup chopped fresh basil
salt and pepper

Boil the pasta according to package instructions in 1 litre of water and 2 tsp salt.

In a frying pan add ½ tbsp of olive oil, heat and fry the onion with some freshly ground black pepper until the onion is soft but not browned. Add the chopped garlic and fry a minute more. Add the chopped tomatoes and a dash of salt and gently fry until the tomatoes just start to collapse and release their juices a little bit, no more than 5 minutes should do. (Be careful not to overcook them here, you don't want them mushy with lots of liquid.)

Drain the pasta and return to the pot. Add the tomato mixture to the pasta, make sure you get all the liquid in there! Now add the parmesan and basil and mix well on low heat until well mixed and warmed up. Drizzle over the other ½ Tbsp of olive oil and stir until creamy looking. Serve with more parmesan to sprinkle over top.
Tomato, Basil and Garlic Fusilli with Vegan Parmesan




Nutritional Information: for the first 'base' recipe only (all the other recipes will be similar enough in stats).

Calories: 492
Protein: 16g
Fat: 15.6g
Sat Fat: 3.4g
Fibre: 4.9g
Carbs: 72.9g
Sugar: 3.7g
Sodium: 417mg



6 comments:

  1. Yum! I made us pasta for a quick, late dinner tonight and all the while eating I was thinking "why don't I cook pasta more often?!" Love the look of all these dishes, especially the orzo w/sun dried toms and olives.

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    1. Yeah, pasta is so great for a quick easy yummy meal, I'm the opposite though and should probably eat a little less of it than I do! :-D (major pasta addict here).

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  2. oh gosh they ALL look so good...especially the fusilli!

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  3. Yum, great easy dinner ideas. I love pasta!

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  4. Hi. I just knew your blog. And there is so much tempting recipes to try.

    I'm a lil bit confuse with Nutritional Yeast. Is it same with yeast used for making bread? I live in Indonesia, i think i never saw this type of yeast.

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    1. Hi Febryani! Glad you found my blog :-)

      Nutritional yeast is not the same as yeast to make bread. It's a deactivated yeast with a somewhat cheesy flavour, wikipedia has a thorough entry on it here:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nutritional_yeast

      They mention in other countries it's also called "savoury yeast flakes", "brufax" or "yeshi". Hope you can find it!

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