Monday, 10 February 2014

Specials Board: Spinach Pasta Topped Mushrooms

This is the first recipe that I'm sharing from the 'daily/weekly' specials menu, more to follow throughout the month.

When it comes to pasta I either make a tomato based sauce, sometimes with other vegetables such as aubergine and courgette or a 'cheese' type sauce. Tonight I wanted something different, something vibrant, something green.

After making my soup course for my Valentines menu I had some spinach left over, (ooh another little hint at whats in store). I used frozen spinach for my soup recipe and as I haven't got my freezer sorted (yet) it needed using up. So I set to and made a spinach sauce.

I was really pleased with the outcome and I've tried it with two types of pasta, Penne and Spaghetti, both were good, although in my opinion you can be a little more creative with how you serve spaghetti.

Ingredients - Serves 4
500g Frozen spinach
1 Clove of garlic
90g Vegan 'cream cheese', I used Tesco Free From Cheddar Style Spread
Black pepper
150ml Almond milk, unsweetened
2 Tbs Nutritional yeast
200g Spaghetti or pasta of choice

First, defrost the spinach, I used a microwave to speed up the process. Drain the spinach through a sieve pressing down to remove most of the water. Transfer to a blender. Roughly chop up the garlic clove and add to the blender with the spinach.

Add the vegan 'cream cheese', almond milk, nutritional yeast and a (very) generous grind of black pepper. Process until you have a thick sauce, if your blender is not that powerful you made need to add a little more milk. Transfer to a saucepan and warm through, be careful not to boil.

Add the spaghetti to a pan of boiling water and cook as per packet instructions, you won't need much longer than 8-10 minutes.

Drain the spaghetti, reserving a little of the cooking water in a jug and tip the spaghetti into the pan. Tip the sauce over the pasta with a little of the reserved cooking water and stir through. 

Serve at once, I served mine a top two grilled field mushrooms which sat on a spinach and mixed leaf salad with cherry tomatoes and cucumber. The mushrooms paired beautifully with the spinach.

Or serve with a hunk of homemade garlic bread. It's so easy to make, finely chop 3 cloves of garlic on a chopping board with a little salt, this helps to make the garlic more into a paste. Add a good glug of extra virgin olive oil and mix on the board. Slice length ways a hunk of bread and mop up the garlic, salt and olive oil with the cut sides. Wrap the bread cut sides together in silver foil and bake in an oven for 10 minutes. Caution: It's extremely garlicky, just the way I like it!

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Thanks for leaving a comment, Jasmine x