When it’s summer, I can’t get enough of recipes that use up fresh tomatoes and basil. But no matter what time of year, I’m always down with quick recipes. You can make this sauce in the time it takes to boil the pasta. My whole wheat pasta cooks in 9 minutes, so this simple sauce makes a 9 minute summer meal that’s hard to beat.
I wanted to make a dish similar to this one, but not using tofutti cream cheese. I decided to replace it with cashews. Cashews are the base of most of my favorite vegan cream sauces because they’re very rich tasting and blend easily, allowing you to create a velvety smooth sauce in your blender.
Super Quick Tomato Basil Cream Pasta
1 Large, ripe tomato (2 cups roughly chopped, 1 1/2 cups blended)
1/2 Cup Raw Cashews
1 Tbs Tomato Paste
1/4 Cup Water
2 Tbs Olive Oil
2-4 Cloves Garlic, minced, optional
6 Ounces (ish) Whole Wheat Spaghetti
1 tsp Salt (edit: upped from 3/4!)
2-3 Tbs Wine or Water, optional
1-2 tsp Freshly Cracked, Coarse Black Pepper
1 Large Handful Fresh Basil Leaves, chopped
Put a large pot of salted water on to boil.
Core the tomato, then roughly chop it. Add it to your blender, seeds, skin and all. Add cashews, tomato paste, and water. Blend until very smooth.
Add olive oil to a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and saute until golden, being careful not to burn. Once water is boiling, add pasta. Pour sauce from the blender into the saute pan and bring to a simmer. Add salt and let cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
If desired add wine/water to thin out the sauce. Taste and season more if necessary. Let simmer until pasta is finished cooking. Once pasta is cooked, drain. Add pasta to the saute pan with black pepper and freshly chopped basil leaves. Toss to coat. Serve immediately, garnishing with more pepper and basil.
Enjoy! And stay tuned this week for a big, happy announcement.