Monday, January 07, 2008

Lemon Garlic Pasta & Basil Chiffonade

We're getting back to some of our regular meals now after the holidays, huh? After all, what better way to embrace this new year than by eating, drinking... and of course, being vegan??!! (can't help myself, I *do* love the title of my cookbook).

Yesterday got a little hectic near dinner hour, so I decided to whip up my Lemon Garlic Pasta from ed&bv.This pasta is a cinch to make, and if you love a decent kick of garlic combined with a sour pucker punch, you'll dive into your bowl of this pasta! And while the sauce is sour, when tossed with hot pasta, along with some of the pasta water, it takes on a slight creaminess that is so enjoyable.

Start by mixing the sauce. You whisk in a bowl, or blend with an immersion blender (which will give the sauce more creaminess with emulsifying the ingredients in the dressing).

Once the sauce is ready, you need only wait for your pasta to cook! Be sure to reserve a mug full of the pasta cooking water... it will help moisten the pasta with the sauce if it is sticking. I decided to throw a bunch of small broccoli florets in with the pasta during the last minute of cooking. A quick blanch of the broccoli, if you will. Then, drain it all, and toss with the toss. (You know, broccoli is one of those words that gets me in its spelling almost every time. I don't mind saying that I'm normally a very good speller... but if I had to count the times I've written "brocolli" instead of broccoli... I digress.)

You can add fresh basil or parsley to the pasta, which I did... and here's a how-to for getting those nice shreds of basil (sometimes called a 'chiffonade'):

Stack your fresh basil leaves, with the smallest on the top, as so.

Then, roll the leaves (I usually go lengthwise, but either way is fine) into a tight roll.

Run your sharp chef's knife through the roll (the closer together the cuts, the thinner and more delicate the basil strands), and you will have lovely little strands of basil like these! Da, da, DA!!!

Easy stuff, looks very frou frou. :)

Go get your apron on, and get to it, guys. No better time than now to go eat, drink & be vegan!

(as a post-note, while I enjoyed the broccoli in the dish, I prefer it with green peas as in this post. You can use frozen green peas, and just briefly cook them (~ a min) in the pasta cooking water as I did with the broccoli )

21 comments:

Julie said...

Oh my goodness, I have never even thought of rolling herbs together like that to chop them. Thank you for that hint!

I'm looking forward to trying this recipe.

Ruby Red Vegan said...

You make cooking a fresh, unique meal so simple! I just looked at the recipe after reading your post, and I never would have thought it would be so easy to make a fancy-sounding vegan meal. I'll be trying this recipe very, very soon...

I have the same spelling problems with the word "Mediterranean" - I question myself every time!

Romina said...

I have a huge post-it on this recipe in ED&BV I can't wait to make it. Mm!

VegMomma said...

I love this recipe! It is so fresh and easy. Mmm...

VeggieGirl said...

looks incredible, as usual!!

since I'm in the process of transitioning to a high-raw vegan diet, I just wanted to thank you for the raw recipes you featured in ED&BV (i.e. the smoothie, one of the dips, etc.) - so great!

urban vegan said...

A taste of summer--yes, indeedy!

Carrie™ said...

I quite often roll basil like you do. Makes it so much easier! I have yet to try this recipe. My new book did come. Don't know if I told you, but it did arrive. So did all of my Christmas gifts this year. Canada Post must have gotten wind of my troubles and decided to step things up and do a proper job.
I always had trouble spelling broccoli, but remember - it's 2 c's as in Carrie. Works for me. :o)

Veg-a-Nut said...

This meal looks wonderful! I can't wait to be able to get your new book! Keep the yummies coming.

linzmarie designs said...

how on earth do you get your pasta so creamy-looking? i made the lemon-garlic pasta recipe last night and it didn't turn out well. i'm no the world's greatest cook though, so i wasn't surprised :) i didn't have dijon mustard so i just used regular, but the pasta ended up tasting more like mustard than lemon and garlic! i'll have to give it another whirl and follow the directions exactly this time. thanks for such great and easy recipes!!

Judy said...

This sounds like a really easy and tasty meal. While I haven't tried this recipe yet, I've really fallen in love with EDBV, and all the fab recipes. Your chocolate pumpkin pie is to die for, as is the Caesar dressing. Seriously, I could just eat it on its own, it's so good. I make it almost every day, too.

Anyway, all that to say that Dreena, I love you! :)

Dreena said...

Linzmarie, yeah the regular mustard may have imparted more of that 'mustardy' flavor, rather than give it the pungency that dijon mustard will - plus dijon helps with that creaminess. Sorry the mustard flavor was too strong for you with the reg mustard. Try the recipe again with dijon, and also try these three things to help make it creamier...
1. Puree the sauce first with an immersion blender, much like making a vinaigrette.
2. Don't use too much pasta for the amount of sauce... ie, don't use more than 3/4 lb of dry pasta - in fact try a little less if you like more sauce vs pasta (that's how I like it!!)
3. Reserve some of the pasta cooking water just before draining the pasta. Drain the pasta (don't rinse), then toss with the sauce and mix through, adding a tablespoon or two of the pasta water. If it's a bit sticky/dry, add more pasta water and mix in. The pasta water helps bring the sauce together, so use it rather than tap/boiled water.
Also, the type of pasta you use might affect the 'creaminess'. I've used brown rice pasta in both the photos on my blog. I think if you use kamut or w/w pasta, it might not have the same light quality. Try Tinkyada brown rice pasta - and a tip: the cut pastas (ex: penne, rotini) stick less than the long cut pastas (ex: spaghetti, fettucine). I love brown rice pasta, but boy it can stick while boiling and those badly stuck pasta strings can't be salvaged! Good luck the next time... hope the tips help!

Anonymous said...

Hi Dreena,

I made the Lemon Garlic Pasta last week and added some green veggies during the last few minutes of cooking the pasta. It was delicious. Thank you. I'm loving your new cookbook. Last night we had the Savory French Lentils. Such a wonderfully easy and satisfying week-night meal.
Jill

linzmarie designs said...

i followed your advice and made this again last night-- it turned out perfect! thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

^^ nice blog!! ^@^

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