When I first turned veggie my lovely friend Kate – @ThatKateCreates – whatsapped me a recipe from Waitrose (which I’ve adapted ever so slightly below) and it’s always on my phone and now regularly whipped-up at home. It’s so so tasty and appeals to meat-eaters too. Great if you’re not in a vegansexual household. Cheap and simple, a classic school-night dinner especially on surprisingly chilly, slighly drizzly nights when you want to nervously day-dream that Donald Trump might not be POTUS after all.
2 tbsp olive oil
2 red onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Around 600g mushrooms- I like chestnut but whatever’s cheap in the shops will work, I’m sure.
A handful of dried porcini/wild mushrooms
A tiny dribble of truffle oil (I use this because I have it in the flat – you REALLY don’t need to go out and get it)
1 veggie stock cube
400g chopped tomatoes
3 tbsp of green pesto. If you make your own use that or I can HIGHLY recommend the Sacla Free From pesto
100g pasta/linguine (whatever you have to hand) per person.
Nutritional yeast (nooch) and any dairy free cheese you might want to use, to serve
Method (for four people)
a/ Add 1 tbsp oil to a large saucepan and gently fry the onions and garlic for around 10 minutes until soft and amazing-smelling.
b/ Turn up the heat slightly, add the rest of the oil and truffle oil (if using it) and add the mushrooms (roughly chopped) and cook for around 7 minutes or so. Add a small handful of dried mushrooms to the pan (don’t worry if you don’t have any though).
c/ Blend the stock cube with around 150ml of boiling water and add to the pan with the tomatoes. If you have any tomato paste knocking about I’m sure a squeeze or two wouldn’t hurt. Bring to the boil, then reduce the temperature and simmer for at least 15 minutes until it’s thicker. Stir in your pesto and season to taste.
d/ Meanwhile boil your pasta and serve along with – if you’re like me – a very generous handful per person of nooch and a sprinkling of cheese. I like the violife ‘Parmesan’. Great with a light green salad or garlic bread. Because there is NO SUCH THING as too many carbs, yo.
I often cook this on a Sunday night so I can have leftovers later in the week and feel smug. Not just smug, very smug. Imagine Rik Mayall doing a smug face and then imagine a big bowl of pasta. Yep, it me!