Archive for Recipes: Savory

Rapini and Barlotti Bean Pasta (with @PastaBoyPeter)

I am lucky enough to have surrounded myself, in this city, with some great people: good friends, and good foodies. Sometimes those lines cross, and those who  were already good foodies became great friends. 

My buddy Peter Ciuffa (aka @pastaboypeter) fits into both categories. Even though Peter was born in Calgary, he is what I would consider to be old-school Italian. He learned all the traditional cooking techniques from his mother and his grandmother, and now teaches classes here in Vancouver, showing others how to do the same. 

Rapini and Barlotti Bean Pasta Dyson

Image by Dyson Media

We were lucky enough to find a spare morning a few weeks back where both of us were free to shoot a cooking video. 

Now, this isn’t the first time we’ve done this… and shooting with Peter is always a very organic, fun affair with lots of jokes and laughs, ending in a delicious meal. 

I put Peter in charge of the food, my only request was that the dish be vegetarian (this dish is actually vegan if you leave off the cheese at the end, or sub out vegan parm). The end result was a fantastic, comforting pasta dish that comes together in just a few minutes.

Big shout-out here to Jeremy Dyson of Dyson Media, who shot and edited this together for us. It was no easy task, but the end result looks so much better than anything I could have done solo. 

Don’t forget–eat with those you love! 

Rapini and Barlotti Bean Pasta

Rapini and Barlotti Bean Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 200 g pasta (we used penne)
  • Salt
  • Olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4–1/2 tsp pepper flakes (to taste)
  • 1 bunch broccoli rape or rapini (bitter greens)
  • 1 can barlotti or cannelini or navy beans
  • 1/2 lemon
  • grated parmesan (optional)
  • salt and pepper
Rebecca Coleman & PastaBoyPeter

Is it even a dish if you don’t Instagram it??

Method: 

  1. Generously salt a large pot of water and bring to a boil. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions, though you want to pull the pasta out when it is still slightly undercooked, or al dente. 
  2. While the pasta is cooking, bring a second pot of salted water the boil, and add the rapini. Cook it until wilted and the stems are tender, about 3-4 minutes. Pull from the boiling water and place immediately in ice water to stop the cooking process. 
  3. In a large frying pan or dutch oven, heat about 1/4 cup of olive oil over medium-high heat. Once the oil shimmers, add some salt and the roughly chopped garlic, and stir until fragrant. Add pepper flakes to taste. 
  4. Next, add in the beans, having drained them (and save the aquafaba!!). Stir well and toss and coat with the oil. Allow them to cook down until they start to pop open and release the starches. 
  5. Next add the cooked and drained rapini, and stir well. 
  6. Drain the pasta, but be sure to save some of the pasta water on the side. Add the pasta to the sauce and toss well, adding additional olive oil or pasta water if needed to make a proper sauce. 
  7. Finish with a grating of lemon zest, a squeeze of lemon, and a garnish of grated parmesan cheese. 

Butter Paneer {Vegan option}

It’s the end of January, and let’s be real; comfort food is on the menu 24/7. 

For breakfast most days I have warm maple oatmeal, and lunches are often rice bowls with tofu and veggies, or a hearty soup. I am craving warming, comforting foods pretty hardcore these days. 

Vegan Butter Tofu

And that includes food that’s spicy. Ginger, garlic, chili; as well as cinnamon, cardamom, and cumin are all warming spices that make you feel cosy. Like a hug for your insides. 

 

So a great deal of what I’ve been craving lately are things like laksa, curries, dosas. Warm, comforting, and satisfying. 

Just before Christmas, I had a work lunch with a bunch of my colleagues and we ended up meeting at an Indian restaurant. It was perfect: fluffy white basmati rice and pillowy warm naan bread, along with generous spoonfuls of warm, spicy curry. 

I love Aloo Gobi (which is potatoes and cauliflower), and I’m also a huge fan of chana masala (chickpea curry), but at this particular lunch, I couldn’t get enough of the Butter Paneer. It’s basically the vegetarian version of butter chicken; the sauce is spicy, but also rich and creamy. 

Indian Food

Traditionally, this sauce is made with tons of butter and whipping cream, but coconut milk makes a great vegan whipping cream substitute. 

So I played around with cashews and coconut cream, and came up with a nice, satisfying vegan version of the sauce. Paneer is an Indian cheese, but you can easily sub it out for tofu to get a very similar effect. 

Serve this over basmati rice with a side of naan bread. You’ll want the bread to sop up every last drop of this warming and satisfying sauce. 

Butter Paneer

Butter Paneer

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp vegan butter substitute
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1″ thumb of fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1 bird’s eye or Thai red chili, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp coriander
  • 1 can tomato sauce (156 ml)
  • 1 can coconut milk (400 ml) 
  • 1/4 cup cashews 
  • 200 g (half a package) of either paneer or tofu, cut into 3/4″ cubes

Method

  1. Place the cashews in your blender container, and cover with 1/2 cup of water. Set aside to soak. 
  2. In a large, heavy pot, heat the vegan butter and olive oil over medium-high heat until melted together. Add the ginger, garlic, chilies and cumin and coriander and stir well. Allow to cook in the oils for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Be careful not to burn (especially garlic, it burns quickly). 
  3. Add the tomato paste and stir well together, allow to cook down for about 5 minutes, until it is starting to caramelize. 
  4. Place the masala (spice & tomato mixture) along with the can of coconut milk in the blender with the cashews that have been soaking, and blend well on high for at least a minute, until smooth. You can run it through a sieve if you are concerned about particulate. 
  5. Pour the sauce back into the pan, and bring it up to just under a boil, and the sauce thickens. Add the cubed tofu or paneer, and stir, allowing them to heat up in the sauce. When everything is heated through, serve atop a bed of basmati rice, garnished with chopped cilantro if you like. 
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