Vegan-able Mac & Cheese + bonus adds
Sorry it's been a minute on recipes, y'all! It's really hard when you don't measure things! Let's get into it!
Sweet Potatoes, (4 small-to-medium)
Nutritional Yeast, about 2 oz by weight, to taste
Cumin, about 1/2 tsp
Olive Oil (several healthy glugs)
Salt to taste (I'm big fan of smoked salts, since I like a smoked gouda mac)
- This will make enough for a pound of boxed pasta, and I like a spirally thing for cheesy sauce
Lobster Mushrooms (Hypomyces lactifluorum)
Shrimp-of-the-woods (Entoloma abortivum)
Salted Butter or vegan butter
Roast your sweet potatoes for about 20 minutes at 350 until they're soft and easy to peel. You can start your water for noodles around this time too (remember to save about 2 cups of pasta water when you drain).
Once you peel the sweet potatoes, pop them in the blender with the nutritional yeast, cumin, and enough olive oil to blend well. You're looking for a consistency of, like, Velveeta. You'll thin this out with the pasta water - a little at a time - and get to a nice silky sauce.
Toss your drained noodles in with the sauce to coat.
I'm not really a breadcrumb-and-re-bake person but you do you.
Now for the bonus add-ins:
For a lobster-mac, sautee some lobster mushrooms and/or shrimp-of-the-woods in some butter (vegan if you like), and I like to add a little ground seaweed to boost the seafood flavor here.
(The way I did it, I started this sauteeing while I roasted the sweet potatoes and boiled pasta, to give the mushrooms time to soften and absorb some butter. Then I added the sweet potato puree and thinned out with pasta-water to reduce the number of pans.)
And/or mushroom bacon:
Slice milkcaps or shiitake mushrooms bacon-slice width, and marinate for a few hours or overnight in equal parts olive oil and tamari (or soy sauce) with smoked salt to taste. Air-fry your slices when ready at about 350 for 20 minutes (I feel like all air fryers are a little different, and so are all bacon-crispiness opinions). I guess if you knew you were going to do these as bacon bits you could go ahead and cube them and that would increase their crispiness...