Recipes / Veganism

Meat-Free Monday Recipe: Vegan Thai Red Curry Mac & Cheese

I love, love, LOVE mac & cheese.  When I went vegan, I didn’t miss eggs or milk or yogurt.  Nope, I only missed cheese…particularly mac & cheese.  While I’ve been quite satisfied with my usual vegan mac & cheese recipe, I’m always interested in spicing things up.

This past weekend, I was lounging around watching a Tivo’ed episode of one of my fave cooking shows, Aarti Party.  Bubbly food blogger Aarti Sequeira, who won last season’s Food Network Star whips up inviting Indian fusion cuisine.  She is so adorbs!  She prepared a Thai Red Curry Mac & Cheese, a twist on the classic comfort food dish and it looked divine.  So I made some tweaks to veganize this hearty entrée.

The red curry paste does all the work for you adding flavor.  If you’re intimidated by spices, don’t be with this meal.  The curry doesn’t overwhelm your palate, rather it imbues a wonderful array of zesty flavors.  With a creamy sauce, warm spices and crisp crumb topping, each bite will surprise and delight your taste buds.

Vegan Thai Red Curry Mac & Cheese

1 pound elbow macaroni
5 tablespoons non-dairy butter (Earth Balance is the best)
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 ounces red curry paste
3 1/2 cups plain soy milk
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes (you can purchase at Whole Foods)
8 ounces vegan cheddar cheese (Daiya rocks as it stretches and melts)
2 tablespoons non-dairy butter (for breadcrumb mixture)
3/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs
Salt & pepper

Directions:

1. Cook pasta according to package’s directions.

2. In a medium-sized saucepan, heat 5 tablespoons butter on medium-high heat.

3. Once melted, add flour to butter.  Whisk for 1 minute.

4. Add red curry paste and whisk together.

5. Add milk and whisk constantly until mixture boils.  Lower heat and simmer until mixture thickens, approximately 5 minutes.

6. Remove red curry mixture from heat.  Add vegan cheese and nutritional yeast flakes.  Whisk together.  Thai/cheesy mixture will be thick.

7. Combine pasta and Thai/cheesy mixture in a casserole dish.  Turn your broiler on.

8. Heat 2 tablespoons butter in a small saucepan.  Once melted, add Panko breadcrumbs.

9. Pour breadcrumb mixture over pasta and sauce.  Put in oven and broil until breadcrumbs turn golden brown.

Serves 4-6

Bon appétit!

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