Creamy Carmelized Onion Pasta

The more I try dairy free recipes, the more amazed I am at how you can get super creamy food from veggies and nuts! In this case, eggplant is the base of a super creamy pasta sauce. I got the idea for this recipe <a>href=”http://minimalistbaker.com/vegan-caramelized-onion-mac-n-cheese/”>here</a&gt;, but naturally, I made my own changes!  I am not a fan of eggplant, at all, so if you’re like me, please try this! It tastes nothing like eggplant and just makes for a super creamy, HEALTHY sauce!

1 onion, thinly sliced
2T olive oil
1 box of pasta (I used a 12oz box of veggie elbow macaroni)
1 eggplant, peeled and cubed
3 cloves of garlic
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes
2T Olive oil
4T nutritional yeast
1T garlic powder
1T cornstarch
1 cup unsweetened plain almond milk
3/4 cup low sodium chicken broth
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup panko
Cooking spray

Sautée onions in olive oil until carmelized, stirring frequently (I like to really cool them, at least 30 minutes)

Toss cubed eggplant, garlic cloves, and cherry tomatoes in olive oil and place on a sheet pan, roast at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until golden, stirring half way through. While the veggies are roasting, boil water to cook the pasta.

In a blender, place garlic powder, nutritional yeast, cornstarch, almond milk, and chicken broth. Once the veggies are cooked and have cooled slightly, add them to the blender and purée until smooth. Season to taste.

Combine the cooked pasta, carmelized onions, and eggplant purée. Stir well and pour into a baking dish. Top with panko and spray with cooking spray. Place in the oven until bubbly, about 10 minutes, then broil until the panko is golden.

Serve and enjoy!! (I apologize for the lack of pictures, I was too eager to eat, and I’m having trouble uploading the one picture I did take!)

Meal Plan: July 27-29

My mom is here this week to visit and help out before I go back to work next week (sad day, it’s been so nice being off for 15 weeks!). I asked my mom to pick some of the recipes I’ve been making that she wanted to try, so here they are!

Sunday: Grilled Ginger Sesame Chicken Salad
I know, not vegetarian, but the dressing makes it all ok! This salad could easily be made sans chicken and would be just as good, or use the marinade for tofu if you’d like! It’s the perfect amount of salt and vinegar that you want in a Chinese chicken salad!
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Monday: CauliPower Alfredo
One of the things I craved most while pregnant (and still do) is fettuccini Alfredo. While this is definitely not as soon as the real deal, creamy, fattening Alfredo sauce I know and love, it is a great alternative until I can eat dairy again! It has a similar mouth feel to dairy Alfredo and is thick and creamy, but is made from cauliflower so it’s much healthier! I like to add broccoli to it, but you could add anything you’d like!
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Tuesday:Taco Chicken with Zucchini Pasta
This dish is so easy and delicious, and comes together super fast! I bought a mandolin with a julienne part that works great for making the zucchini noodles! This recipe is with chicken but you could just as easily use tofu or shrimp!
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Unfortunately I won’t be cooking the rest of the week, but here is a bonus recipe! I made this delicious dessert while my mom was visiting so she could try a vegan raw dessert! I added an extra tablespoon of maple syrup to the filling, and also added about 1/4 cup of cocoa powder 🙂
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars
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Stay tuned for next week’s meal plan!

Vegan deliciousness

As I said earlier, I have had to stop eating dairy while breast feeding thanks to baby girl’s super sensitive tummy! It has been really fun trying new recipes and discovering the magic of turning nuts into cheese, sauce, and dessert!

Here are some of the amazing recipes we have tried:

Entree
Vegan Zucchini Gratin
Taco Chili with Nacho Cheeze Sauce
CauliPower Alfredo
Roasted Garlic White Pizza with Macadamia Ricotta

Cheese
Baked Cashew Cheese
Herb Cashew Cream Cheese

Dessert
Flourless Chocolate Cake (not actually vegan because it has eggs, but it is dairy free)
•and the most AMAZING THING EVERDouble Dark Chocolate and Raspberry Cheesecake

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Have you tried soaking cashews?? Who knew they become so creamy and versatile! Most of the time I don’t even miss cheese! (Although I could really go for some good cheddar on crackers, or a good cheese pizza!)

Also, I came across this recipe for a basic white sauce (can be used for sour cream, dip, sauce, cream cheese, etc, depending on how much water you add):
1 cup cashews – soaked in water for about an hour, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup olive oil
3oz of lemon juice
1-2 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1/4-1/2 cup water (depending on what you want to use it for, I used 1/2 cup for sour cream/dip)

Combine all ingredients in a food processor or high speed blender. Blend until very smooth. Place it in the fridge, it will thicken slightly when cooled. You can also add anything else, spices, etc!