Every so often I like to make a vegan dish for a few reasons.  First, the food is actually delicious (don’t knock it ‘til you try it) and second, I have friends and family members who are vegan (or follow a similar diet), so I like to have a few recipes in my back pocket in case I’m ever entertaining them.  I’d rather be accommodating so they know they can comfortably eat at my house than have them eat before coming over.  And truly, the food is quite good, in addition to being good for you!

Bruschetta Pasta is one of my to-go dishes.  It is a vegan dish, but you could easily add parmesan cheese or a little shredded mozzarella if you aren’t following a special diet or don’t have dietary restrictions.  I like this pasta because it’s very light and refreshing.  Think of traditional bruschetta, but instead of serving it on crusty bread, you are serving it with noodles.

The recipe can be found here.

Start by cooking the pasta according to package instructions.  Reserve 1/3 cup of the pasta water, then drain the pasta and set aside.

Add 2 Tbsp of olive oil to a large skillet and heat over medium heat.  Add the chopped garlic and sauté for 2-3 minutes or until the garlic has softened.  Pour the garlic and olive oil (from the skillet) into the bowl of a food processor.  Let cool for a few minutes.

Reuse the same skillet (for less dishes!).  Add 2 Tbsp of olive oil and heat over medium-low heat.  Add the tomatoes and sauté for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.  You don’t need to slice the tomatoes beforehand.  You want the tomatoes to heat through and start to burst open.  Season the tomatoes with salt and pepper, to taste.

Add the balsamic vinegar to the skillet and stir to coat the tomatoes.  Your kitchen will smell amazing by now!  Reduce the heat to simmer and heat for 3-4 minutes or until the balsamic vinegar thickens slightly.  Turn off the heat.

Add 2 Tbsp of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper to the food processor with the garlic and olive oil that is already in there.  Turn the food processor on low and start to blend the ingredients while slowly drizzling in the reserved pasta water.  Blend until smooth.

Add the garlic sauce to the cooked pasta and stir to coat the noodles.

Add the balsamic and tomatoes to the cooked pasta and toss to combine.

Add red pepper flakes, to taste, and the chopped basil.  Toss to combine.  I like to add a lesser amount of red pepper flakes.  You don’t want the dish to be too spicy.  You can always add more to each individual bowl later on, if you want more heat.

Serve warm with additional chopped basil for garnish.  You could also find some vegan parmesan cheese to add, if desired.  Bon Appetit!

The recipe can be found here.

I do think you will enjoy this recipe, vegan or not.  The flavors blend together nicely and it’s a lovely pasta dish.  It also tastes just fine when it’s cold so you could serve leftovers for lunch the next day right out of the fridge or re-heat for a warmed-up option.  Give it a try!

Happy cooking!

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