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vegan miam

Creamy White Bean Alfredo with Fried Pierogi

Last month, I shared my simple white bean Alfredo recipe and I added something a little extra to make it creamier making it to die for. You can use it in anything from fried pierogi to some good pasta. In Europe, I fell in love with their soya cream products and used them for creamy sauces, garnishes, and soups. I was disappointed that they weren’t available here in the U.S. and I’ve decided to make my own cooking cream. Please note, I don’t have a high-speed blender, however if you have one, yours will turn out brilliantly smooth which is what I would like to have.

Creamy White Bean Alfredo with Fried Pierogi

These vegan mushroom cabbage pierogi are from Polska Foods and they taste awwwwe-mazing! The Polish-style dumpling filling contains fresh sauerkraut, locally-grown crimini mushrooms, carmelized onions and earthy caraway seeds. We discovered them in the freezer section at Safeway just minutes away from home and grabbed loads of them. In addition, they are soy-free, GMO-free, certified organic by Oregon Tilth, and contain no added sugar, MSG, trans fat, preservatives or additives.

Creamy White Bean Alfredo with Fried Pierogi

Let’s talk about this dreamy cooking cream I’ve been raving about earlier. My cooking cream was inspired by Erin, a fantastic food blogger behind Olives for Dinner. I admire her use of Asian flavors in some of her recipes, she’s one of only a few vegan bloggers that I know who has worked with two of my favorite ingredients: gochujang and douchi! Erin made her basic cashew cream using coconut vinegar. I used only distilled white vinegar and modified each measurement in her recipe to create my cooking cream version and it turned out fabulous for my creamy white bean Alfredo. This is what I’ve always wanted. I can’t wait to use this cooking cream for my pot pie filling or creamy wine & mushroom sauce.

Cashew Cooking Cream

The fabulous cashew cooking cream provides the ultra creaminess to my Creamy White Bean Alfredo sauce. Please note, the recipe calls for 1 pound cooked pasta or pierogi and yields 4 to 5 big meals. Halve the recipe if needed, but this Alfredo sauce make great leftovers! I’ve also included two different methods – preferred and quick + easy. I use the preferred method all the time. Please let me know which method works for you.

Cashew Cooking Cream

Creamy White Bean Alfredo Sauce

Yield: 4 to 5 servings

Ingredients

2 small heads of garlic
1 (15-ounce) canned, cooked beans, drained and rinsed
2½ - 3 cups vegetable broth (depending on thickness)
2 tablespoons margarine or extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup shallot, finely minced
1½ cups cooking cream
¼ cup chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves to garnish
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Method

Cook 1 pound pasta or pierogi according to instructions on package. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut ½ inch off top of each garlic bulb. Drizzle with oil and wrap each garlic bulb in foil. Roast until tender, about 45 minutes.

Method #1: Slow Cooking

Place the beans in a large soup pot or Dutch oven. Add stock to the pot with the beans, turning the heat to medium-high and bring to a gentle boil. Simmer, partially covered, until beans are very tender, about 10 to 12 minutes. Skim off any foam and skins. The stock is your “thickening agent.” Meanwhile, in a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of the margarine or oil over medium heat, add shallots, cook, stirring often until tender, about 2 minutes. Add a ladleful of cooked beans with ½ cup liquid from the pot and slowly mash them with a big fork or spatula. Squeeze roasted garlic cloves and discard skin. Add another ladleful of beans and liquid from the pot with the beans and again stir and smash the beans continuously until absorbed. Repeat this process until all the stock from the pot has been used.

Method #2: Quick + Easy

Squeeze roasted garlic cloves into a blender or food processor and discard skin. Add beans and blend into a smooth puree. With the motor running, add 1½ cups stock in a steady stream, using only enough to yield a creamy, sauce-like consistency. Strain sauce through a fine-mesh sieve and set aside. Meanwhile, warm up the remaining stock, it should be hot and ready to use. In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of the margarine or oil over medium heat, add shallots, cook, stirring often until tender, about 2 minutes. Add and heat the bean puree and slowly add ¼ cup of broth at a time.

Add cooking cream, stirring often until the sauce thickens. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Just before serving, stir in the chopped parsley. Serve over cooked pasta or pierogi.

Notes

This recipe calls for 1 pound cooked pasta or pierogi.

Variation: Add sautéed mushrooms and peas in the sauce.

Advance preparation: If the sauce is too thick, add more water. If the sauce is too thin, let it cook longer since it will reduce. Add additional spices accordingly.

Keeping: Store the creamy sauce in a covered container and for the best flavor and texture, eat the sauce within 2 days. After refrigeration, the sauce will thicken, so reheat the sauce gently in a small saucepan over low heat on the stove and add a few tablespoons of unsweetened dairy-free milk or water to thin the sauce out.

Have you tried pierogi before? What are your favorite creamy Alfredo dishes?


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