The enjoyable thing about the School of Christian Living’s vegan challenge is that it forces me to get creative and adapt recipes to work within the limits I have set. This pasta dish was loosely based off a recipe, but to make it vegan and fit in my price point, I took quite a few liberties so that the final product is quite unlike the original recipe I started with. And sometimes trying something different works out wonderfully. I loved the way this dish uses diced tomatoes but doesn’t feel like a spaghetti sauce. The mushrooms and garlic give it a great earthiness while the tomatoes give it some zing and binds the whole dish together. While I can’t wait to try the original recipe in its cheesy goodness, this was an excellent dish and I didn’t miss the cheese at all. Lots of flavor! And while 4 heads of garlic sounds super intense, the roasted garlic was actually pretty subtle. If you’re a garlic-lover feel free to add another head. I made the garlic a day ahead and kept it wrapped in foil until ready to use.
Adapted from The Flour Sack
- 4 heads garlic, top 1/3 cut off
- extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 large portobello mushrooms, large chop
- 1 lb white button or baby bella mushrooms, quartered
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 2 lbs bow-tie or other small noodle pasta
- 2 (15oz) cans diced tomatoes
- 2 Tbsp fresh rosemary, minced
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 3/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
Preheat oven to 450°F.
Drizzle cut garlic heads with olive oil and wrap tightly in foil. Place in the oven and roast for about 40-50 minutes until golden brown. While garlic roasts, chop and quarter the mushrooms and place on large baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and salt, mix well and roast in the oven for about 15-20 minutes, until browned but not dry.
Cook pasta according to the instructions, being sure to salt the pasta water really well (at least 1 Tbsp of salt) once it has come to a boil. When the pasta is done, reserve 1 cup of pasta water and drain the rest.
In a large sauce pan, mix together the diced tomatoes and roasted garlic cloves. Mix in the rosemary and sugar. When the mushrooms are done mix in the mushrooms and pasta water to the sauce. Just before serving, combine the sauce and the pasta in a large bowl, toss well to combine. Sprinkle with toasted walnuts.