Veganuary might be over but there's no deadline for trying out a new vegan dish. I'm trying to cook more this year and if something is quick, easy and good for the planet than I'm much more likely to be found in the kitchen than browsing Deliveroo.
Florette sent me a bundle of vegan goodies to inspire me to make a high-protein, easy vegan recipe. This pasta dish only took around half an hour and was super tasty.
I used some of the ingredients I was sent but you could use regular dried pasta (fresh pasta contains egg) but the kale, quinoa and brown rice pasta I used is available here and is gluten free. Regular pesto isn't suitable for vegetarians or vegans (I only realised this recently when a vegan friend explained why) but Zest Pesto is vegan and tastes amazing. Tofu is a great source of vegan protein but I used to have no idea how to cook it - baking it is really easy, or you can make a tofu scramble (recipe here), it's much cheaper to buy plain tofu than the pre-flavoured stuff but its definitely one of those ingredients that takes a bit of trial and error to make it really tasty.
To make the baked tofu:
- remove the tofu from the carton and place between two plates on kitchen paper to remove as much water as possible
- make the tofu marinade, I used balsamic vinegar and a splash of maple syrup to give the tofu its golden colour
- cut the tofu into cubes, dip into the marinade and place on a baking tray
- bake for 25 - 30 minutes at 180 degrees, turning halfway through cooking
For the pesto pasta:
- cook the pasta, drain and return to the pan
- mix in a tablespoon of pesto per person
- serve on a bed of Florette Leafy Rocket and sprinkle with nutritional yeast (sounds bizarre but it's a vegan substitute for parmesan cheese - I use this one)
I have to confess that this is the first time I'd cooked pasta for about five years - when your kitchen looks like this even boiling pasta is a bit of a challenge!