Wednesday, November 02, 2011

recipe :: pasta with creamy romanesco

The bad news: I'm going to make you wait another day or two until I announce the winners of my contest.
The good news: There's still time to enter. [Wink, wink!]
If Kermit the Frig were a vegetable, he would be romanesco.
Romanesco is an alien-looking vegetable. It reminds me of something that should live in the sea, like a Christmas Tree Worm and its odd appearance conjures up all sorts of steam-of-consciousness visuals. As you can probably guess from looking at this pale celadon wonder, romanesco is related to both cauliflower and broccoli. I find its taste ever-so-slightly more bitter than either, which is fine by me because I adore bitter veggies. Since it's not something you run across every day, especially in organic form, I was thrilled to find two heads in last week's CSA share [Two heads are, indeed, better than one].

Orchiette, or "little ears" are the perfect cups to scoop up this creamy sauce.
You can use romanesco in pretty much the same way you use its more popular cruciferous cousins. I used it to make an easy, creamy-noochy pasta topping. You can use gluten-free pasta, whole wheat pasta or plain old white pasta, like I did. Scroll down for the recipe...

Kitty Lit...

Many of you have been asking for kitty updates, so here's the latest. The Three Stooges are all fine. Bossa Nova still sleeps on the job. She's getting sweeter – to me, at least. She still swats at Buttons and hisses at Pablo.

Buttons is enjoying her senior years. She's been with me for 3 years now and is likely close to 14-15 years old. I don't even think she remembers her early days as a gutter kitty. As you can see from this iPhone shot, she loves napping in the sleeping bag next to Pablo, who is twice as big as this five-pound bag of sugar.

Pasta with Creamy Romanesco

  • 2 heads romanesco, chopped and steamed
  • 1 T olive oil
  • Anywhere from a dash to 1 tsp paprika
  • 5 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 cup non-dairy milk
  • 1 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 cups bite-sized pasta [eg, orchiette, penne, farfalle, rotini]
  • Salt, to taste

Serves 2

  1. Start cooking the pasta according to the directions on the box.
  2. Heat the oil in a medium pan and add paprika to taste [I use the whole teaspoon!]. Add garlic and saute until soft, about 4 minutes.
  3. Lower heat to medium-low. Add the milk and whisk in the nutritional yeast. Stir in the steamed romanesco and cook until warmed through and thick-ish, about 10 minutes.
  4. Drain the pasta and gently toss with the sauce. Add salt to taste.


Dawn said...

You confirmed my suspicions about romanesco, thanks! Now I wish I bought it at Wegmans when I saw it there a little while ago, wonder if they still have any...

Now I really want to try it!I love bitter veggies, too, and I just bought some half-sharp paprika from Penzey's actually with you in mind (I want to make your chickpea paprikash!).

Vegan Fazool blog
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Mattheworbit said...

The cats are looking gorgeous, but that romeso is rather gnarly looking! We can't get it here. And who knew about christmas tree worms!

I might try this with some broccoli, arugula, kale and spinach (greens to bring on the bitter!) tonight.. Thanks

Irene @ H.V.R. said...

I tried this one with some kale and it was so delicious! Great dish, very flexible dish!

Madison @Veggieful said...

Everything you make looks sooo yummy!! I am saving your blog into my favourites :)

I am on a blog roll at the moment looking at all of the other vegan blogs out there.

Check out mine if you have time: