Monday, November 5, 2012

Vegan Mac N Cheese

Sorry I have not posted in a few days. Our family took a trip to Asheville, NC this past weekend. If you have never been and you are looking for a great place to take a mountain vacation, Asheville is great!  Lots of vegan options and even a 100% vegan restaurant PLANT.  They also have a lot of great natural body care and progressive store fronts. We took a hike at the NC Aboretum, learned about botany and saw some really interesting bonsai trees in their dedicated bonsai exhibit. It was a great time!

I made some Mac N Cheese (not real cheese of course!) the other night. John absolutely LOVES this recipe. I have done a few things differently and wanted to re-type the recipe in this blog to reflect that. This recipe is based off of VegNews Vegan Macaroni and Cheese from October 4, 2008.

4 quarts water
16 oz organic macaroni (I like the bow ties)

4 slices of homemade sourdough bread
2 TBSP coconut EarthBalance (in the red and white container)

2 cups organic yellow potatoes, peeled and chopped
3 tablespoons organic green onions chopped
1/2 cup organic carrots, peeled and chopped
2/3 cup onion, peeled and chopped
2 cups water

1/3 cup coconut EarthBalance (in the red and white container)
1/2 cup organic, raw cashews
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
2 TBSP lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
a little less than 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Fresh organic parsley (2-3 TBSP)

Bring 4 quarts water to a boil and add pasta. Cook until al dente. Drain pasta in a colander and rinse with cold water. Set aside.

In a food processor, make breadcrumbs from the 4 slices of bread and the 2 TBSP Earth Balance. Pulverize to a medium-fine consistency.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a saucepan, add potatoes, green onions, carrots, onion and 2 cups water.  Bring to a boil. Cover the saucepan and simmer for 15 minutes or until veggies are very soft.

In a food processor, blend the cashews, salt, garlic, 1/3 cup EarthBalance, mustard, lemon juice, black pepper and cayenne.  Add the softened vegetables and cooking water to the food processor and process together until really smooth.

In a large bowl, mix the pasta and blended "cheese" sauce until the pasta is covered. Spread the mixture into a 9 X 12 casserole dish. Sprinkle with your homemade bread crumbs and then dusk with 1/4 teaspoon of paprika. Bake for 30 minutes or until the cheese sauce is bubbling and the top has turned golden brown.

I like to add 2 TBSP of fresh organic parsley right before serving. Sometimes I chop it up and other times I leave it whole. I think it adds a nice POP of color to the dish.

The original recipe is really good too- more EarthBalance, salt and cayenne. I just prefer less of those things.

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