September 2nd, 2014


VeganMofo 2014 #2 - Salad bowl spaghetti

I've loved spaghetti for as long as I can remember. When I ate it as a kid, it was always made with refined semolina wheat, usually covered with a store-bought tomato sauce (filled with oil, sugar, and salt) and Parmesan cheese (made with animal milk and more salt), and frequently accompanied by a salad with iceberg lettuce and bottled dressing (filled with more oil, sugar, and salt). When I made spaghetti for myself or with family or friends in later years, I often wouldn't bother with the salad.

Now that my knowledge and tastes have matured, I can enjoy spaghetti in a healthier way. First, I always choose a whole-wheat version. I've tried pasta made with brown rice and other whole grains, but I prefer the taste of wheat. I don't have a wheat allergy or gluten intolerance, so I see no reason to avoid it.

Next, I either use a homemade sauce or diced fresh (or salt-free canned) tomatoes and herbs. There are some oil-free tomato sauces on the market, but few are free of salt and sugar as well.

Finally, I always accompany my pasta with vegetables (or sometimes fruit, if the pasta is couscous), either mixed in or on the side. The other night I didn't feel like making a salad, so I just mixed some of my usual salad fixings into the spaghetti itself. (Though I used kale instead of lettuce, warm lettuce not being my thing.)

I sauteéd yellow onions, garlic, fresh oregano, and fresh basil in homemade, salt-free vegetable broth, then added the kale and cooked for a few minutes. Tossed in chopped tomatoes and chickpeas (both mainstays of my salads). Put the whole thing over the cooked spaghetti, and sprinkled with homemade vegan parmesan (usually a blend of blanched almonds and nutritional yeast, but boyziggy used some cashews in this batch as we ran out of almonds, and added garlic powder).

Hearty and tasty!