Vegan Mac and Cheese: The Isa Chandra way
Just about every vegan chef on the face of the planet, not to mention every blog, every cookbook, and every vegan has a recipe for vegan mac and cheese. Well, I’m on a quest to make the dish perfect. This project has undergone many variations, from baked with a roux to stovetop from a box, all in pursuit of the perfect creamy sauce atop heavenly noodles. So here’s the latest rendition:
A recipe from none other than Isa Chandra Moskowitz, of an old timey vegan classic. You can find this recipe here, on Isa’s blog, and it’s easy to follow and the results are glorious. Someone commented on the post that sunflower seeds are like cashews’ cheaper cousins and I agree. This was one of my first time cooking with the little boogers, and I have to say that commenter was absolutely right. Almost just like cashew except far cheaper and smaller of course. I’ll be using them more often in the future, so stay tuned! I foresee vegan alfredo (another classic I’ve yet to experiment with) and more “creamy” sauces and dips. Can someone say delicious?
But, back to the mac! This recipe used carrots as well as the sunflower seeds, along with the traditional dousing of nutritional yeast, garlic, and veggie broth. I blended it all up in my blender versus my food processor as mine is just a little too small to handle all of the liquid in the recipe (I had my first overflow, it wasn’t pretty). We had mac 2 days in a row! This recipe made so much sauce that we were able to cook up a second box of noodles the next day for lunch and still have a little bit of sauce leftover to use as a queso with some nachos for dinner. (We got take away from a local restaurant)
So how did this version stack up to the others we’ve tried so far? Pretty well! Though my quest continues. One day I hope to combine what I’ve learned from other vegans’ recipes into one slam dunk of a mac and cheese recipe. (perhaps at a restaurant of my own, or so I dream…)
One more thing about this recipe: it’s gluten free! You use cornstarch instead of flour, and the noodles were used were quinoa and corn. As part of my mindful eating goal for the month of February, I’m taking time to notice particular body sensations after eating certain foods. After listening to a story (gotta love Diane Rehm) on NPR about gluten, ciliac disease, and gluten sensitivity I started thinking that some of my digestive and other health ailments seemed to fit the bill of gluten sensitivity. So lately, I’ve been cutting out gluten containing foods and paying close attention (practicing body mindfulness) to my body sensations in response to these changes. More on this later! But in the meantime, enjoy one last (gluten free) mac and cheese pic:
Happy mac-ing! Bisous! Rachel