Saturday, December 17, 2011

Smoky Alfred

Hurry Up Alfredo has been a unanimous household favourite over the last couple of years. The recipe comes from Vegan Yum Yum which was one of my first vegan cookbook purchases and the alfredo was the first recipe I tried. I have probably made this more than any other vegan cookbook recipe as it's so quick and easy to prepare and such a crowd-pleaser at home. The first time I made the recipe as stated in the cookbook and then the tinkering began...

Smoked paprika was the first alteration and after enjoying it so much in this sauce I could never go back to making it without. Ingredients were omitted from the sauce every now and then which didn't seem to have a significant impact on the meal. After reading Cindy from Where's the Beef and Johanna from Green Gourmet Giraffe's posts about Hurry Up Alfredo and seeing their photos, I realised that my version had become quite different to the original recipe as well as Cindy and Johanna's adaptations. It's probably not so much of an Alfredo these days but we do still fondly refer to this meal as "Alfred".

I always like to add some greens to it which is usually broccoli, spinach or in this case broad beans. Left-over tofu bacon is a welcome addition too. This meal always satisfies our creamy pasta cravings and the smoky flavour is what makes this meal such a hit.

On an unrelated note, the plums on our tree are ripening which has been prompting these stunning rainbow lorikeets to visit on a daily basis. My week has been brightened up by these gorgeous birds chatting away and feasting on the plums a couple of metres away from my work desk.

Smoky Alfred (Adapted from the Hurry Up Alfredo recipe in Vegan Yum Yum)

300g frozen broad beans
1/3 cup cashews
1 1/3 cup soy milk
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon tahini
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
250g pasta
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic minced
1/3 quantity tofu bacon, chopped
handful of fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped

Place the broad beans into a pot of boiling water and cook for 2 minutes. Drain the beans in a colander and rinse well with cold water. Squeeze the beans out of their pods and discard the pods. Cook the pasta according to the package directions, then drain in a colander.

Process the cashews in a blender until it becomes a powder. Add the soy milk, nutritional yeast, soy sauce, tahini, lemon juice, dijon mustard and smoked paprika and then blend until everything is combined.

Heat the olive oil in the pot you cooked the pasta in and fry the garlic for about 30 seconds. Pour in the sauce from the blender and then add the cooked pasta, broad beans, tofu bacon and basil. Stir for a couple of minutes until heated through. Serve immediately with freshly cracked black pepper.


  1. What a great photo of that lorikeet! I love having them around during the day - they hang out in the palm trees outside our windows. But I'm less fond of them at 5am, when they wake up (and I would rather not...)

  2. Those plums are fantastic! And the lorikeet too - great photo. I like hearing how you've modified this recipe over time too, often the best recipes are those that are tweaked and tweaked until they're not at all like the original, but somehow much better in small and personally-suited ways.

  3. those lorikeets are beautiful - what do you do with all the plums? (or at least those that are spared by the lorikeets)

    nice to see your alfredo recipe - I must try it with more smoked paprika

  4. I haven't made vegan alfredo in forever--need to get on it, yours looks so yummy!

  5. Theresa, I wouldn't be as fond of them at 5am either! It's a novelty for us to have them in our yard at the moment.

    Kari, sometimes I'm not very popular with all of the tweaking that I do but other times it definitely pays off.

    Johanna, I have been struggling to get my hands on the plums as the fruit is quite high off the ground. I'm not much of a stone fruit lover but I am hoping to bake a cake or something with some of the plums.

    Jes, vegan alfredo is such a delicious meal. My boys would eat it all the time if they could.