Vegan Pasta Carbonara

I’m happy to be back from my blogging hiatus. Unfortunately this was a hiatus of the ‘imposed’ variety. For the past three weeks Janik and I (and my daughter too) have been fighting a sinus infection/head cold  that has limited my creativity in the kitchen. In fact, just the other night my daughter remarked “Really mom, soup for five nights in a row?” Yes, it was really that bad 🤪. Now that I’m feeling like my old self again (aka feeling hungry and inspired in the kitchen) I wanted to return here with an incredible vegan twist on an Italian classic: Pasta Carbonara. I thought I’d also try my hand a different format this blog post…one that’s a little more casual in style.

The non-vegan ingredient list for this classic Italian dish would look something like this:
Egg yolks, hard cheese (typically Parmesan or Reggiano), meat (bacon or pancetta), garlic & olive oil

How I’d describe this dish if I didn’t have my photographer extraordinaire husband snapping glamour shots of it:
Indulgent.  Features a creamy sauce with delicate garlic undertones. The soy curl “bacon” is the perfect balance of salty, sweet and smoky.

Worth the hunt:
I had to do a bit of digging to find soy curls but they are WELL worth it. Not only do they soak up flavour like nobody’s business but they also have a texturized, meat-like appearance and turn dark and crispy when pan-fried.

My kids’ reaction to this recipe:
I don’t like it, I LOVE it!  (as a side note my kids have never eaten meat (at least that I know of) but I’m sure if they had ever tried bacon they would say THANKS MOM!)

The perfect companion to this recipe:
The crisp, firm crust and sponge-like inside of this Ciabatta bread will immerse you in an authentic Italian dining experience – without the hassle or price point. This wholesome bread is perfect for dipping as well!

Enjoy~

Ingredients

Soy Curl “Bacon” Marinade

  • One 8oz/227g package of Butler’s Soy Curls, rehydrated (see Recipe Notes below)
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/3 cup light-bodied oil (eg avocado or grapeseed)
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp tamari sauce + extra
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke+ extra
  • 1 Tbsp sweet chili sauce
  • Olive oil (for pan-frying)

Cream Sauce

  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 Tbsp fresh parsley
  • 1 Tbsp vegan butter
  • 1 cup soy milk
  • One batch of Savoury Parmesan Cheese
  • 1/4 cup reserved pasta water
  • Himalayan pink salt

This & That

  • 1lb dry pasta of choice, cooked
  • Savoury Parmesan Cheese (garnish)

Method
Prep It 

1/Prepare Soy Curl Bacon Marinade:
-Add garlic to your Thermomix mixing bowl. Chop 5 sec/Speed 7. Using a spatula, scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl.
-Add canola oil, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, tamari sauce, liquid smoke and sweet chili sauce to your Thermomix mixing bowl. Whisk 30 sec/ Speed 3
-Transfer marinade to a shallow dish. Add rehydrated soy curls to the dish. Marinade soy curls in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours (or overnight if time allows).

Make It  

Serve It 

4/Heat a skillet to medium-high heat. Drizzle olive oil over the skillet. Pan-fry the marinated soy curls until brown and crispy (the darker the better!)

Important: Add a few drops of tamari sauce and liquid smoke to the skillet during frying to enhance the flavour~

Cream Sauce

  • 1/Add garlic and fresh parsley to your Thermomix mixing bowl. Chop 5 sec/Speed 7. Using a spatula, scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl.
  • 2/Add butter to the TM bowl. Sauté 2 min/120C/Speed 1.
  • 3/Add soy milk,  partial amount of the parmesan cheese (1/2 cup/75g), reserved pasta water and pinch of salt to the TM bowl. Cook 3 min/90C/Speed 1.
  • 4/Add another heaping Tablespoon of parmesan cheese and pinch of salt to the TM bowl. Blend 30 sec/90C/Speed 5. Your sauce is now ready.

Assembly

Plate your cooked pasta. Pour cream sauce over pasta followed by pan-fried soy “bacon” soy curls. Garnish with additional parmesan cheese (optional) Serve hot~

Recipe Notes

* Each 8oz bag Butler’s Soy Curls yields 1.5 lb soy curls when hydrated

*How to rehydrate soy curls:

  • 1/Place soy curls (8oz/227g) in water. Add enough warm water to completely cover the curls. Let soak for 10 minutes.
  • 2/Drain soy curls and rinse in cold water. Using the underside of a spoon, press gently on the soy curls to release any excess water.

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4 thoughts on “Vegan Pasta Carbonara

  1. Pingback: Spaghetti Pie |

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