Carbonara is a pasta dish with bacon, egg and cheese and is one of the classics of the Italian cuisine. After my boyfriend raved about a vegan version we had in an Italian restaurant, I was inspired to surprise him with my own creation. Since then it has been one of his favourite dishes. To make it more balanced, I also prepare a huge salad. Onion and garlic don’t really belong to a traditional Italian carbonara. But it tastes better to me.
Ingredients (4 people):
- 400-500 g pasta
- 1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
- 180 g smoked, salted tofu
- 1 big onion, minced
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/8 TSP salt
- 1/8 TSP turmeric powder
- A pinch of nutmeg
- ¼ TSP black pepper
- 4 TBSP chickpea flour
- 400 ml pasta water
- 85 g cashews or sunflower seeds
- 3 TBSP nutritional yeast flakes (for cheesy taste)
- 1/2 TSP Kala Namak salt (for eggy taste)
- Few drops (less than 1/8 TSP) of lemon juice
- Powder the cashew nuts in a blender.
- Heat half of the olive oil in a pan over medium heat and roast the diced tofu for 10-15 minutes. Then put the tofu aside in a bowl.
- Bring a pot of water to boil and cook the pasta according to the packet instructions.
- Heat the other half of the olive oil in the same pan over medium heat. When hot, add the onions and sauté for 7-10 minutes until the onions are translucent.
- Add the garlic, salt, turmeric, nutmeg, pepper and stir occasionally for a minute.
- Add the chickpea flour and stir occasionally for another minute.
- Add the pasta water. Let it simmer for 5 minutes. Turn off the stove.
- Add the cashews, yeast flakes (B-vitamins are killed at 60°C / 140°F), Kala Namak, lemon juice and stir well.
- Add the drained pasta and roasted tofu to the thick sauce and stir well to combine. Serve warm.