I am so excited to share this recipe! I knew that I had a TV segment coming up today, and wanted to make a really special spring pasta, with a bold and flavorful sauce, that is brimming with lots of fresh spring vegetables. I played with this recipe a number of times, until I got it just where I wanted it. If only you could see my recipe development in action. I make the dish a bunch of times, tweaking it here and there until I’m happy. Then I’ll ask my husband to taste each one, explaining which bowl contains which version. It’s very scientific, trust me. But it’s my process for developing recipes, and it’s the same whether the recipe is going into one of my books, on my blog, or is slated for a magazine article. I want to make sure that the recipe is perfect, and will come out for everyone.
Anyway, back to the recipe! It’s a super-creamy sauce, contains only a few ingredients, and tastes like it took you hours to prepare. It also takes under 30 minutes, so it’s even faster than going out to dinner. Plus, it’s delicious, and totally guilt-free. To round it out as dinner, serve it with a lovely little salad and a bottle of wine. Oh, and this recipe serves 2 to 3, so you can easily double it to make more.
Oh, and if you haven’t tried the new Parmesan from Follow Your Heart, it’s awesome! I love it sprinkled over this pasta, or any pasta for that matter. It’s delicious!
Here’s the video clip from this morning’s TV segment:
I hope you give this one a try. You’re going to love it! If you make it and put a pic on Instagram, I’d love for you to tag it with @julieskitchenette.
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 7 ounces asparagus, ends removed and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 2 ounces organic baby spinach
- 8 ounces pasta or spaghetti, gluten-free or regular
- 11/8 cups water
- 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons white wine
- 1/3 cup raw, unsalted cashews
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 1/2 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
- 1/2 cup frozen baby peas
- Grated nutmeg, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- About 1/3 cup finely minced parsley
- Follow Your Heart vegan parmesan, for garnish
- In a large skillet over medium high heat, add the oil. Once the oil is hot, add the asparagus and cook for 2 minutes. Add the spinach and cook another minute until it’s just wilted and bright green. Remove the asparagus and spinach to a plate and set aside.
- While the asparagus and spinach is cooking, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling water until it is al dente. Drain and reserve the pasta.
- In the jar of a strong blender, combine the water, wine, cashews, nutritional yeast, garlic and salt. Blend until completely smooth, and there are no remaining little bits of nuts.
- Add the cashew sauce to the skillet. Cook over medium high heat stirring as needed, until the sauce has thickened up to the consistency of thick cream, about 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the frozen peas. Sprinkle a little nutmeg into the sauce, and a few grinds of pepper, mixing well. Add the cooked asparagus and spinach to the sauce, stirring gently.
- Place the cooked pasta in a serving bowl and pour the sauce over the top.
- Variation: Omit the peas and asparagus and double or triple the spinach.
- Tip: If you don’t have a ultra-strong blender, soak the cashews for several hours or overnight, drain, and combine in the blender with the remaining ingredients.
- Copyright © 2016 Julie Hasson
- Vegan + Gluten-Free