This pasta dish is topped with a white cashew sauce that's infused with sauteed onions and garlic. The coconut bacon adds just a touch of smokiness that pairs perfectly well with the creamy sauce, and a topping of crushed walnuts adds crunchy texture.

Creamy White Pasta With Crispy Coconut Bacon [Vegan]

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Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup raw cashews (soaked for 2 hours*)
  • Olive oil, for frying
  • Coconut bacon (optional)
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup unflavored almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon lemon juice (from about 1/2 lemon)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast (optional)
  • Several leaves of fresh basil (optional)
  • Nutritional yeast and toasted walnuts, for topping
  • 1 pound of your favorite pasta
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Preparation

  1. Prepare pasta until just al dente (then drain, and place back in the pot). Meanwhile, prepare your sauce!
  2. First place about 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan and add your coconut bacon. Fry over medium-low heat, until just starting to crisp up, about 3 minutes. Remove coconut bacon from the pan, and add the onion into the oiled pan, raising the heat to medium-high. Add a bit more oil if needed. Saute the onions and garlic until the onions soften and just begin to turn golden, about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool down.
  3. Put your cashews and almond milk into the blender and blend until relatively smooth. Add the onions and blend until no chunks remain (if the onions are still warm you may need to stop and release the steam while blending so that your lid doesn't pop off). Add lemon juice, salt, pepper, nutritional yeast, and about 1/2 tablespoon of the coconut bacon. Blend. Give the sauce a taste and add a bit more salt and pepper, if needed. Add about 5 leaves of basil, and pulse a few times to chop it up a bit and disperse it into the sauce.
  4. Add the sauce to your drained pasta and heat until warm. Top with chopped basil, a dash of nutritional yeast, and toasted walnuts, or any combination of the three!
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