Sunday, May 22, 2011

Winning Alfredo with Broccoli

I decided to make this for dinner on a whim.  I read a lot about how fellow vegans were having trouble making a good alfredo sauce and I was eager to try my hand at it. The trick here is to resist the urge to add any liquids such as soymilk or water.  That way you will get a delightfully thick and creamy sauce, packed with flavor.

Winning Alfredo with Broccoli

1 block of Mozzarella (I use Follow Your Heart brand) cut into centimeter sized cubes.
2T Vegan Butter
3 Cloves of Garlic, minced
1/3  C Nutritional Yeast
2 T Parsley Flakes
1 t Fine Sea Salt (or to taste)
½ t Fresh Cracked Black Pepper (or to taste)
1/3 C Veganaise (I use Follow Your Heart, the variety made with Grape seed oil but the original also works)
¼ C Olive oil
1 Head of broccoli, cut into small florets, discard stalk and stems (or freeze them for making stock later)
13.5 oz box of curly pasta such as rotini
5 Green onions, white and light green parts thinly sliced (optional garnish)

1.       Begin heating water to cook the pasta.  Start on the sauce while you wait for the water to boil and the pasta to cook.  Do not discard the water you cooked the pasta in.  Use a slotted spoon to remove the pasta from the sauce pan and place it in a colander to drain. Move to a large bowl or serving dish.

2.       In a medium saucepan melt butter and add garlic.  Saute until the garlic becomes fragrant (a few minutes).  Add olive oil and mozzarella and mix together making sure no garlic is left sticking to the bottom of the pan.

3.       Continue cooking mixture on medium heat, stirring frequently.  Once the cubes have melted slightly (about 3 minutes)  add the nutritional yeast, parsley, Veganaise, salt and pepper (add less salt and pepper than you think you need, you can always add more once you taste).

4.       After you have removed the pasta from the water it was cooked in, add warm water if necessary and bring it back to a boil.  Add the broccoli and cook for 3-5 minutes (depends on the size of the florets).  They should be soft but not mushy.  Drain and add to pasta.

5.       Taste the sauce and add salt and pepper if needed.  Pour over pasta and broccoli and stir to combine.  Serve hot.  Optional: Garnish with the green onions by sprinkling them on top just prior to serving.

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