Sunday, July 21, 2013

MacCatty and Cheese (Vegan Mac and Cheese)

MacCatty and Cheese

Instead of my usual approach, I leave you with this poem.

Oh MacCatty and Cheese! How I love thee. 
Your yellow exterior inspires me to live a life that is cruelty-free. 
Your creamy texture surprises me. Is there cheese in there? No, no…you are dairy-free.


MacCatty and Cheese

1 pound (16-oz package) gluten-free or regular pasta of choice
3 cups unflavored almond milk (I used Almond Breeze Original)
¼ cup vegan butter, melted
¾ cup nutritional yeast (I used large nutritional yeast flakes)
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika (regular paprika may be substituted)
½ teaspoon white pepper (optional)
½ teaspoon turmeric
2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons cornstarch, plus 2 tablespoons of water (to make the slurry)
2-3 tablespoons gluten free panko or breadcrumbs of choice, plus additional 1 tablespoon of vegan butter

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water to prevent from further cooking. Set aside.

In a medium sized saucepan, melt ¼ cup vegan butter over medium heat. While the butter is melting, in a large bowl, whisk together almond milk, nutritional yeast, Dijon mustard, onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, white pepper, turmeric, and salt. Add the sauce mixture to the butter, stir and bring to a boil.

While you are waiting for the sauce to boil, make the slurry. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of water. Whisk until there are no lumps left. That’s your slurry! Once the sauce is boiling, lower the heat to a simmer and add the slurry to the sauce, gradually while continually whisking it for about 5-6 minutes. Once the sauce has thickened, turn off the heat.

To assemble, coat a 12-inch cooking dish with a non-stick cooking spray and add the prepared pasta. Add the sauce and mix well. Top with panko or breadcrumbs of choice. Add a few dabs of vegan butter. Cook uncovered in the oven for 30 minutes.

In a hurry? Skip the oven and add the cooked pasta to the prepared sauce without baking it.

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