Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Baked Mac 'n' Cashew Cheese

Adapted from VegNews (January-February 2008). We spent so much time in the kitchen this past holiday, we decided to make something quick and comforting, so VegNews' Mac 'n' (cashew-based) Cheese recipe totally caught my eye! We got very positive responses at Candice's Christmas Eve gathering (including kudos -- in the form of actual consumption -- from Mac 'n' cheese connoisseur Tyler). Definitely a keeper.

Our modifications were minor: more garlic and less cooking water used.


  • 2 tsps. sea salt
  • 8 ounces macaroni (we used fusili)
  • 4 slices of bread (we used sliced francese), torn in to large pieces
  • 1/3 c. + 2 tbsp. Earth Balance buttery spread
  • 2 tbsp. shallots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 c. red or yellow potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1/4 c. carrots
  • 1/3 c. onion
  • 1/4 c. cashews
  • 3/4 tsp. garlic
  • 1/4 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika

Cook macaroni until al dente.

Using a food processor, make breadcrumbs by pulverizing sliced bread to a medium-fine texture with 2 tbsp. margarine. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 350F.

In a medium saucepan, add shallots, potatoes, carrots, onion and 1 c. of water. Bring to a boil, then cover the pan and simmer for 15 minutes or until vegetables are very soft.

Process cashews, salt, garlic, 1/3. c. margarine, mustard, lemon juice, black pepper, and cayenne in a blender.

Add softened vegetables and cooking water, as needed, to the blender and blend until perfectly smooth.

In a large bowl, completely coat the pasta with the blended cheese sauce.

Spread the pasta into a 9x12 casserole dish.

Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and dust with paprika.

Bake for 30 minutes or until the cheese sauce is bubbling and the top has turned golden brown.

Serves 6.


Anonymous said...

Definitely gotta try this! Thank goodness! A mac n' "cheese" recipe without nutritional yeast! Its sounds great! THanks for the recipe!

cvc said...

I had a similar response (oh, good! A nutritional yeast alternative!) when I saw the original recipe! It is not low-fat, but we liked it a lot. Would love to hear what you think of the recipe!