Behold the power of the cashew. When soaked and pureed, it morphs into a cream that is vegan’s blank canvas to work from. In this dish you really wouldn’t know there wasn’t any actual cream. Refreshing lemony, basil sauce smothered all over pasta and topped with pine nuts. Yes, pine nuts are expensive but they are well worth it here as they complement the other flavors very nicely.
Makes about 1 cup
1/4 cup diced onion
3 garlic cloves, chopped garlic
1/3 cup cashews soaked overnight
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/4 – 1/3 cup vegetable broth, water from cashews or plain water
1 handful of basil leaves (or more to taste)
Salt and pepper to taste
Toasted pine nuts for garnish
Cooked pasta, cooking water reserved
Heat olive oil in skillet and saute onion and garlic with a pinch of salt over medium heat for about 3 minutes. Add to blender with cashews, lemon juice, 1/4 cup of broth and basil. Blend until pureed, adding additional broth as needed.
Heat skillet over low-medium heat and add enough pasta water to just cover the bottom. Add in sauce and pasta and stir for 1-2 minutes or until heated through. Add a tablespoon of pasta water at a time if needed to thin out. Add salt and pepper to tasted and drizzle with olive oil if desired. Serve topped with pine nuts.