I’ve placed the word carbonara in speech marks because on the Jamie Oliver page there is a massive argument about it not really being a carbonara because it doesn’t conform with the traditional Italian perception of that dish. Personally I don’t care what conforms to what norms. I didn’t event this recipe, but what I can tell you is that it was bloody delicious and nutritious.
I fed this to my fussy eating vegan parents, brother, grandmother and little sister and they all very much enjoyed it. It however took me 20 minutes because I had to double the quantity of pasta due to the amount of people I was serving. The recipe below is the quantities for 4 people.
For the salad
- 25 g pine nuts
- 2 green chicory
- 2 clementines
- 100 g baby spinach
- 4 sprigs of fresh mint
- 45 g vegan cheese
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon agave nectar
For the pasta
- 320 g wholemeal dried penne
- 70 g vegan chorizo (My parents live in the middle of nowhere so I had to improvise and use Redwoods sausages with lots of chilli.)
- ½–1 fresh red chilli
- 2 teaspoons of dried rosemary
- olive oil
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 2 heaped tablespoons vegan soya yoghurt
- juice of ½ a lemon
Ingredients out • Kettle boiled • Large frying pan, medium heat • Large lidded pan, high heat
Toast the pine nuts in the frying pan for a few minutes, tossing often
Put the pasta into the lidded pan, cover with boiling salted water and cook according to packet instructions
• Finely slice the stalk ends of the chicory and click apart the upper leaves into a serving bowl. Peel and finely slice the clementines, add to the bowl with the baby spinach, then pick over the mint leaves. Shave over a tiny bit of vegan cheese and scatter with the hot nuts.
In a cup, make your dressing with the vinegar, extra virgin olive oil and agave nectar, then season to taste and put aside.
Finely slice the sausages or chorizo, chilli and rosemary and put into the frying pan with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and a pinch of pepper, then squash in the unpeeled garlic through a garlic crusher and move everything around until lightly golden.
Place the lemon juice, soya yoghurt and remaining finely grated vegan cheese together in a food processor and blend until it looks like the below image. I also added some nutritional yeast for extra cheeseyness.
Drain the pasta, reserving a cupful of the starchy cooking water. Toss the pasta into the chorizo pan, remove from the heat and mix well with the creamy sauce, loosening with a splash of cooking water, if needed, then season to taste
Dress and toss the salad, then serve with the pasta