This plant-based entrée is inspired by trendy, homemade cashew creams. With simple soak ‘n cook steps and a powerful blender, it’s easy to whip up our savory mushroom-cashew sauce. Creminis resemble white mushrooms, but with a brown cap and are also known as baby bellas or browns. In lab studies, mushrooms’ glucan compounds show promise in preventing colon cancer.
Makes 6 servings.
Yield: 3 cups cream sauce, 2 cups mushroom mixture.
Per serving: Per serving: 438 calories, 18 g total fat (3 g saturated fat), 59 g carbohydrate, 15 g protein, 8 g dietary fiber, 250 mg sodium.
3 cups mushroom broth, divided
1 small-medium potato, peeled, cut in 1-inch pieces
1 cup raw unsalted cashews
12 oz. whole-wheat linguini, fettuccini or wide noodles
2 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
1 small-medium onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, cut in 1/4-inch slices
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. finely chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 lb. cremini, baby portabella or brown mushrooms, cut in 1/4-inch slices
3 Tbsp. finely ground flaxseed, preferably golden
1-2 Tbsp. fresh chopped parsley for garnish, optional
In small pot, bring 1½ cups broth, potato and cashews to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to medium high and cook until potato is fork tender, about 10 minutes. Using handheld strainer, pour broth into small bowl and retain potato and cashews in strainer. Rest strainer over bowl.
Cook pasta according to cooking directions and keep warm.
While, potatoes, cashews and pasta cook, in large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery, pinch of salt and few grinds of fresh pepper and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add herbs and sauté 1 minute. Transfer onion-celery mixture to large bowl, cover with foil and set aside.
Using same skillet, heat remaining oil over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, pinch of salt and few grinds of pepper and sauté until mushrooms are brown, about 5 minutes. Add sautéed mushrooms to bowl with onion-celery mixture and mix together.
In high-speed blender add half vegetable mixture. Recover remaining mixture with foil to keep warm. Add potato, cashews and flaxseed. In 2-cup liquid measuring cup, pour in reserved mushroom broth (original 1½ cups will have reduced during cooking). Add additional broth to measure 1½ cups. Add broth to blender. Purée all on high until smooth. Return sauce to skillet over medium heat and simmer until heated through, about 5 minutes. Stir in additional broth if necessary for desired consistency.
Divide pasta among 6 large bowls. Ladle sauce over pasta and top with remaining mushroom mixture. Garnish with parsley, if using, and serve. Alternatively, toss all pasta with sauce, top with mushroom mixture and garnish with parsley, if using, before plating.
• Mushroom broth
• Raw unsalted cashews
• Whole-wheat linguini, fettuccini or wide noodles
• Olive oil
• Freshly ground black pepper
• Cremini, baby portabella or brown mushrooms
• Ground flaxseed
By Dori Mitchell, MS, RDN
and Michael Kastre
The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) is the cancer charity that fosters research on the relationship of nutrition, physical activity and weight management to cancer risk, interprets the scientific literature and educates the public about the results. It has contributed over $105 million for innovative research conducted at universities, hospitals and research centers across the country. AICR has published two landmark reports that interpret the accumulated research in the field, and is committed to a process of continuous review. AICR also provides a wide range of educational programs to help millions of Americans learn to make dietary changes for lower cancer risk. AICR is a member of the World Cancer Research Fund International (WCRF).