RIGATONI WITH VEGAN TOMATO CREAM SAUCE

RIGATONI WITH VEGAN TOMATO CREAM SAUCE

RIGATONI WITH VEGAN TOMATO CREAM SAUCE

I visited three grocery stores to procure the ingredients but failed to find one crucial item: sunchokes. So I prepared roasted red beets and sautéed beet greens with creamy polenta instead.

I was crushed – and motivated to press on. With a few tweaks (namely, subbing in celeriac for sunchokes), I finally completed the culinary mission. The result? This rigatoni with vegan tomato cream sauce. While it doesn’t stay true to the original recipe, the primo piatto is utterly delicious.

INGREDIENTS
Vegan cream:
¼ cup raw cashews
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup finely diced celeriac
¼ cup finely diced yellow onion
1 tablespoon brown rice flour
2 cup vegetable broth
1 tablespoon white wine
½ teaspoon sea salt
Remaining ingredients:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup diced white onion
4 garlic cloves, minced
½ teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 14.5 oz. can crushed tomatoes
¾ cup water
1 pound rigatoni
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
chopped fresh parsley (optional, for garnish)
INSTRUCTIONS
Prepare the vegan cream:
Place cashews in a small bowl and cover with cold water; let stand at room temperature for at least 4 hours or overnight. Drain well and transfer to a food processor.
In a medium sauce pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add celeriac and cook for 1 minute. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, 3-5 minutes.
Brown rice flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
Add vegetable broth, wine and salt; stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
Transfer mixture to the food processor with the cashews and purée until smooth. Set aside.
Make the pasta:
In a medium sauce pan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until it starts to brown, 6-8 minutes. Garlic and salt and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add tomato paste and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
Add tomatoes and water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.
Add vegan cream and cook until heated through, 1-2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid.
Add sauce to pasta and toss to coat. Add some of the reserved cooking liquid if pasta seems dry. Garnish with parsley, if using, and serve immediately.