Monday, 21 July 2014

Robin's Fettuccine and Broccoli with Almond-Herb Sauce (vegan and gluten-free)

Rocket & Roses Kitchen Play List:

Orianthi ~ Shut Up And Kiss Me 
Texas ~ Guitar Song
VAST ~ Candle
The Rolling Stones ~ Miss You
Jack Johnson ~ Drink The Water
Sound City Sessions ~ You Can't Fix This
Susan Tedeschi ~ It Hurt So Bad
Buble ~ The Dock Of The Bay
Maroon 5 ~ Through With You
Rival Sons ~ Pressure And Time
Train ~ Feels Good At First
Buckcherry ~ King Of Kings (acoustic)
Republica ~ Drop Dead Gorgeous
Lissie ~ Pursuit Of Happiness

I finally got around to making another dish from my holiday cook book. Usually I pick up a new cookbook and take it away with me and spend the week testing and devouring a few of the recipes from it. But the holiday I bought it for, really wasn't that kind of a holiday. There simply wasn't the kitchen time required and more people with a higher priority for using the kitchen. For some people cooking is a chore...and not a holiday activity. But for me it's exactly the opposite...I relax when in the kitchen. I can switch off the pain and focus on the prep, cooking and then eating of the food cooked. Cooking for me is so much more than daily's a form of meditation and without I get cranky. lol. I should be resting right now but the hour I spent in the kitchen this morning with my little niece Layla to 'help'...maybe was exhausting but mentally it was uplifting and just a pure but tiring joy! 

The cook book of choice was a copy of Robin Robertson's One Dish Vegan. I had been reading several reviews of Robin's cookbook for a while and decided to give it a go. I made the Provencal Vegetables with Israeli Cous Cous (using maize cous, cous) which I enjoyed very much with all the natural flavours of the veggies used but I had a lasting thought that it needed a little something extra and I plan to play around with it at a later date. I also made a batch of the Chickpea Noodle Soup (using brown rice noodles) and I devoured a bowl of it each day. Yum! The reason I chose today's recipe was because I had recently purchased some mung bean fettuccine which is gluten-free. In all honesty I couldn't wait to try it..I love mung beans and fettuccine so what was there to lose? Robin's recipe for the sauce intrigued me and the use of all those fresh herbs sealed the deal. A pasta sauce that wasn't cheese or tomato based...marvellous. 

There was only one thing I would do differently next time...I would steam my broccoli florets and not boil them in with my pasta. But I do realise this would be using more than one dish therefore making Robin's recipe a two dish meal! I simply don't enjoy boiled veggies. The making of the sauce was simple and I loved the use of beans, fresh herbs, white wine, and broth. I really wasn't sure if I would like the almond butter element though but I did. The mung bean fettuccine cooked to perfection in 7 minutes. The entire cooking time was 15 minutes...from chopping board to placemat. The bowl of pasta looked spectacular and the comfort from eating a bowl of fettuccine with a rich, creamy sauce was a pleasure indeed. The sauce clings perfectly to the pasta and is rich in it's creaminess but delicate in flavour. The beans and almonds sit in the background whilst the herbs combine to give your tastebuds a treat. It makes a large amount of sauce so I have enough to have some for meal later in the week and to try freezing some for much later days. A fabulous meal and chock full of goodness too.

Robin's Fettuccine and Broccoli with Almond-Herb Sauce

Fettuccine and Broccoli with Almond-Herb Sauce   Makes 1 3/4 cups of sauce
(Recipe from One-Dish Vegan by Robin Robertson)

8 - 12 oz unccoked fettuccine of your choice
2-3 cups small broccoli florets

1 tbsp olive oil or 1/4 cup water
1 sm onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 1/2 cup cooked cannellini beans or 1 15oz tin cannellini beans, 
rinsed and drained
2-3 tbsp almond butter (I used 2)
2 tbsp dry white wine (optional)
freshly ground salt and pepper to taste
1 cup of hot vegetable broth or water
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, plus whole leaves for garnish
1 tbsp chopped fresh tarragon
1 tbsp chopped fresh italian parsley
1 tbsp chopped fresh chives
1 tsp minced fresh thyme or savour
2 tbsp sliced toasted almonds, for garnish

Cook the fettuccine in a large pan of salted boiling water, stirring occassionally, until it is tender. At about 5 minutes before the pasta is done cooking, add the broccoli. Drain the cooked pasta and broccoli well and return to the pan. 

While the pasta is cooking, heat the oil or water in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occassionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the beans, almond butter, wine (if using), salt, and pepper to taste, and stir to blend the flavours. Transfer the the mixture to a food processor or high-speed blender. Add the hot broth and HALF of the herbs, and puree until smooth and creamy. 

Add the sauce to the pot with the pasta and broccoli. Add the remaining fresh herbs and toss gently to combine. Serve immediately, garnished with the almonds and while basil leaves. 


Thanks for stopping by and I hope your week has started well...


NB: This is not my recipe and therefore take no credit for its creation. It is the hard work and creation of Robin Robertson's and Robin's alone. I send thanks for a great cook book. ~R~