Spelt pasta with oat cream, leeks and mushrooms

This wholesome pasta dish bursts with flavour. I made the sauce with oat cream – a combination of organic oat milk and softened cashews blended together. The result is a light and nutty cream sauce.  For the pasta, I used whole grain spelt pasta which is more nutritious than white pasta.  I am very pleased with the outcome of this dish and my husband John liked it a lot. By adjusting the ingredients slightly, it can be vegetarian or vegan.  Bon appétit!

Level: easy

Serves 4-6

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Oat cream

Spelt pasta with oat cream, leeks and mushrooms

Ingredients

  • Whole grain spelt (épeautre) pasta
  • Oat cream: 1 cup oat milk + 4 tablespoons (tbsps) raw cashews softened (see procedure)
  • 2  tbsps grated Gruyère cheese -or- smoked tofu
  • ½ teaspoon (tsp) cayenne pepper
  • 3 tbsps olive oil
  • 2½ cups brown button or a mix of brown mushrooms (button, shiitake, wild), sliced
  • ½ cup leeks, finely chopped
  • 2-3 garlic buds, pressed
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • ½ cup white wine
  • 1 generous handful of fresh parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsps green chives, finely chopped
  • Salt & ground pepper to taste
  • For non-vegans: grated Parmesan on the side to sprinkle on top

Note: To my oldest daughter who doesn’t like mushrooms. You can substitute them with zucchini (ha!).

Procedure

Put the cashews in a small bowl and cover them with water. Cover the bowl and heat on high in microwave for two minutes. This will soften the cashews. Strain the water when done. Add the soft cashews to one cup of oat milk. Pour this into a blender and wizz until smooth.

Pour the oat cream into a small sauce pot. Heat this up on stove and whisk until it boils then reduce to a simmer. Add the grated cheese or smoked tofu and cayenne pepper. Simmer uncovered and whisk regularly on low for 3 minutes until thick. Take off heat and set aside.

On medium-high, heat the olive oil in a medium-size deep skillet. Add the mushrooms, leeks, garlic and thyme and sauté together for 5 minutes or until most of the water from the mushrooms has evaporated. Add the wine, parsley and chives and simmer stirring frequently for a few minutes. Add the oat cream sauce and stir to combine. Allow the sauce to simmer gently uncovered, stirring often just for a few more minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Take off heat and cover.

Prepare the pasta according to package instructions.

Reheat the sauce slightly and ladle it on pasta servings.

Sprinkle servings with grated Parmesan cheese (option).

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Julie Zimmer

Julie has extensive experience in nursing practice and education in a wide range of fields from intensive/coronary care, to medical-surgical to community and public health. Julie has Bachelor Degrees in Psychology and Nursing, and a Master’s Degree in Community Health Nursing Education. She has taught in faculties of nursing and in various communities in Toronto, Canada and in Geneva, Switzerland, and is a consultant to the International Council of Nurses (ICN). Julie also has years of experience teaching English as a foreign language (EFL) in addition to coordinating an English department in a Swiss private school.

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