Monday, 19 December 2011

Fusilli with Caramelised Onions and Walnuts

Kitchen Play List: Frank Sinatra ~ Christmas Dreaming
                                     Kay Starr ~ The Man with the Bag
                                     Mills Brothers ~ You Don't Have to be..
                                     Peggy Lee ~ Rings Those Bells
                                     Louis Armstrong ~ Cool Yule
                                     Frank Sinatra ~ Let It Snow! Let it Snow!..
                                     Dinah Washington ~ Silent Night

As the holiday season is fast approaching and rich foods are likely to be consumed..this weekend I was craving light and unfussy meals. Odd that I would turn to a pasta recipe then, eh? lol. But I wasn't looking for the usual pasta with a sauce..I wanted something different. I found this recipe in Donna Klein's cookbook Vegan Italiano.

It felt like the right recipe and I quickly got the ingredients together and got cooking. Now my onions didn't fully caramelise as I suspect Ms.Klein had meant them too..despite having twice the cooking time. But as I like steamed onions it really wasn't an issue for me. And My Love asked if I had cooked them in a non-stick skillet..which I had..and apparently that has an effect on the caramelisation process. This I did not know! Learn something new every day eh? So did My Love when reading the handy tip in the And as I am trying to make all dishes I cook 'Sally' Low at the moment I didn't use the stock..I just used water. 

I wasn't sure at the end of the cooking time if I was going to like this. But I was wrong because although this dish is subtle in's a good flavour. You get the nuttiness of the wholemeal pasta, sweetness from the onions, comfort from the fresh basil and a tang from the walnut pieces. Which added all together makes for a very pleasing meal. We really enjoyed it. 

So my question is this? How do you caramelise your onions? lol. Hope your Monday is a good one folks...

Fusilli with Caramelised Onions and Walnuts
Fusilli with Caramelised Onions and Walnuts Serves 4
(Recipe from Vegan Italiano/Klein)

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or rapeseed oil
4 cups/1lb thinly sliced onions
1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
10 oz wholemeal fusilli, cooked in your preferred way
1/2 cup low sodium veggie stock or water
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
3 tbsp chopped walnuts
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

In a large skillet with a lid, heat the oil over a medium heat. Add the onions and salt and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes. Cover, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover and cook, stirring frequently, until onions turn deep golden, about 15 minutes, adding the garlic the last few minutes of cooking. 

Add the pasta, stock/water, basil, walnuts and pepper to the skillet, toss well to combine. Season with salt if necessary. Serve at once. 

NB: This recipe would work really well with GF Buckwheat pasta as it has a similar taste to wholemeal pasta.