Here’s the thing. I feel like I’ve said this 1 million, zillion times. I really liked cheese. Not enough to trade my new found ability of “able to function normally after eating” for consuming it, but I really liked it. A lot.
My cravings for cheese and exact memories of its flavor have faded enough that most items with a creamy texture and chuck full of nutritional yeast will satisfy my cheesy needs. Most of the time. There are some days that I just need something…more. Something processed. And “Not Really All That Healthy”. And gooey. And artificially-cheesy. I decided this alternative was better than actually diving into a bowl of real macaroni and cheese, and I set off to the health foods store to check out the “processed” vegan cheeses. I’ll admit – other than the occasional taste – I haven’t had many of them. I don’t think I’d really enjoy them on their own – but – spoiler alert – in a creamy melty sauce with noodles – uhm. Yeah. To die for.
For this processed-vegan-cheese recipe I chose the Daiya wedges. I went with cheddar (a good solid stand-behind) and havarti – which – I will admit – I did not realize was jalapeno garlic until I had..uhm..put it in the macaroni already. I can say it was a very happy mistake 🙂Also? Topped with roasted onion and mushrooms? Even better. You don’t really have to top it with these roasted veggies. You can choose your own. Or, you can leave the vegetables out all together. I was just trying to squeeze some ounce of nutritional value into dinner. Nathan suggested some garlic-roasted broccoli – which would be delightful.This sauce would be delightful over a variety of foods – I’m thinking nachos. And baked potatoes. And – chips and salsa. But, most importantly, it is amazing over noodles.
- 16 ounces of noodles of choice (I chose gluten free shells)
- 12 ounces of mushrooms (optional or veggies of choice)
- 1 large onion, chopped (optional or veggies of choice)
- Balsamic vinegar and olive oil for roasting vegetables
- 1 can of coconut milk
- 1.5 cups of vegetable broth
- 3 cloves of garlic, peeled
- 4 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 2 tablespoons mellow miso
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground mustard
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 packages of daiya cheese wedges (or non dairy cheese of choice) (I used cheddar and jalapeno garlic Havarti)
- 2 tablespoons potato, corn or tapioca starch
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees
- Put a large pot of water on to boil for the noodles, and then cook according to package instructions. When done, set aside.
- Prep roasting vegetables of choice with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and roast for 20 - 25 minutes or until brown - cooking time will vary depending on the vegetables chosen. Once veggies are done, set aside.
- While noodles are cooking and vegetables are roasting, prep the sauce
- Combine coconut milk, vegetable broth, garlic, nutritional yeast, miso, turmeric, ground mustard and black pepper in a blender and blend until creamy
- Transfer sauce to a sauce pot and add the diaya cheese wedges, heating over medium - high heat until they melt
- After they have melted, add starch (potato, corn or tapioca) 1 tablespoon at a time, until sauce thickens enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon
- Combine noodles, roasted vegetables and sauce in a large bowl or pot and stir well.
- Serve warm. Store any leftovers in an air tight container in the fridge once cooled completely.
- You could also pour this into a casserole dish and bake it (with, perhaps, some onions on top). I did this for Thanksgiving in 2014 and it was delish!
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