Whenever I make my Creamy Carbonara Sauce, it always reminds me of my first trip to Rome. At the time I was a vegetarian and keen to try a traditional Spaghetti Carbonara. Coincidentally, a restaurant next door to the hotel I was staying at claimed to serve up the best Spaghetti Carbonara in the city. A lot has changed since then and I imagine most Italians would criticise my version of the dish. Nevertheless, I think it’s delicious!
If you can’t find liquid aminos, you can also use tamari or a vegan worchester sauce.
As a rough guide, this recipe serves 2.
- 250g wholewheat spaghetti
- 200g chestnut mushrooms
- 200ml soya cream
- 100ml water
- 100g frozen peas
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 stick of celery
- 1 brown onion
- 4 tbsp. nutritional yeast
- 1 tbsp. fresh or dried oregano
- 1 tbsp. rapeseed oil
- Sea salt and black pepper to taste
For the tofu bacon you will need:
- 100g firm tofu
- 2 tbsp. liquid aminos
- 2 tbsp. smoked rapeseed oil
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 tsp garlic powder
Add the liquid aminos, smoked rapeseed oil, garlic powder and smoked paprika to a small dish then stir to combine. Set the mixture to one side then cut the firm tofu in to small cubes, around 5mm thick.
Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 7, around 220 degrees. Dip each piece of tofu in to the mixture then place on baking tray lined with baking paper, spaced evenly apart. Place the tray in the oven and cook for 15 minutes while you prepare the sauce.
Peel and finely chop the mushrooms, garlic, celery and onion. Heat the rapeseed oil in a large saucepan using a medium heat then add the prepared vegetables.
Cook for 5 minutes to allow the vegetables to soften a little then add the oregano. Coat the vegetables in the oregano then cook for 5 minutes.
Add the soya cream, water and nutritional yeast then stir to combine. Cook for a further 10 minutes while you prepare the spaghetti. At this point you can also remove the tofu from the oven and leave it to cool.
Start by adding the spaghetti to a large saucepan filled with water. Heat the water using a medium heat then cover the saucepan with a lid. Cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally to stop the spaghetti from sticking together.
Drain the spaghetti using a colander then add it to the sauce along with the tofu bacon and the frozen peas. Stir to combine then season to taste.
Allow the frozen peas to thaw, this should only take a couple of minutes.