Last week in the ICA store in Möllevången, here in Malmö, I saw these awesome new soya bacon pieces. Well, I just had to buy them and make myself a vegan spaghetti carbonara didn’t I 😉
Here’s a recipe for an equally creamy sauce as the original, but 100% plant based.
To make, you’ll need:
- 1/2 pack soy bacon (87g)
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1tsp vegan butter,
- 100ml Oatly cream (or any other plant based cream)
- Glug of garlic infused oil
- 1tbs nutritional yeast
- 1tbs vegan mayo
- Lots of black pepper, around 8-9 cracks
- Handful of chopped fresh parsley,
- Lots of vegan Parmesan ( I used Astrid och Aporna’s Riv-iera)
Start by putting on the spaghetti, the dish isn’t going to take long to make! Once the spaghetti is starting to simmer in it’s salty water, start by melting the butter in the pan and adding in the vegan bacon. I used ones from ICA here in Sweden, but I’m sure there are definitely nice bacon alternatives you could use, like smoked tofu, or tempeh bacon etc. Fry off until it starts going crisp, then add in the garlic. Fry until it cooks out its raw bite. Now, add in the Oatly cream, black pepper, nooch and garlic oil. Turn the heat down to low and stir. When they have thoroughly mixed together take the pan off the heat. By this time, the pasta should be nice and al-dente. Strain into a colander. As the sauce has started to cool down, you can add in the vegan mayo. This will give the same unctuous taste and feeling as using eggs in a traditional carbonara. Stir through the pasta evenly, so that each strand of spaghetti is enrobed in the sauce. Serve with the chopped parsley and a generous helping of vegan Parmesan.
Here’s a recipe perfect for a quick meal on a weeknight and it gives you a variation on the famous Italian pesto.
for the pesto:
- A big handful of spinach
- A handful of watercress
- A handful of basil
- 20g blanched almonds
- 2 garlic cloves, grated
- 10g Parmesan, grated
- Some Extra Virgin Olive oil
- salt & pepper
For the meal:
- A small pack of pancetta
- 20g chestnut mushrooms
- 200g penne pasta ( I usually work on 100g per person, so this serves 2)
- Half a packet of Italian salad leaves/ wild rocket
- salt & pepper
Before you start the meal I’d make the pesto, albeit not a traditional pesto, which includes pine nuts that can be expensive, any creamy nut will work and its fun to experiment with different leaves and nuts. To do this, all you have to do is use blender ( I use a stick blender) and blend up the leaves, nuts and garlic until smooth, pouring in the oil little by little until its a runny paste. Next, add the Parmesan and season with salt & pepper and blend again. Keep aside. You can also freeze the pesto if you’ve made too much.
Next, Heat a shallow pan on low and fry the pancetta, until all of its smokey oil has been rendered. Now, add the mushrooms and fry them until soft. Whilst this is cooking you can boil the pasta in some salted water. When the mushrooms are done, add a big heaped spoonful (or two) of the pesto, to cook the raw garlic out. The pan by this point should be a vibrant green. Next, drain and add the pasta and stir. Then, add half a packet of Italian salad leaves and stir until the green oily sauce has covered everything. Serve and top with plenty of black pepper and freshly grated Parmesan. We served ours with some homemade garlic bread and a couple of crisp larger.