Half of my recent batch of this vegan macaroni dish got packaged up and sent to a friend who’s recently moved on campus to do her PhD. The other half was devoured by my hubs and I for lunch one afternoon. Thumbs up all around and it catered to my craving for broccoli cheese sauce, so next time this sauce is going on some jacket spuds. Nom nom nom.
I’m of the opinion that the best milk to use in a vegan cheese recipe that calls for a creamy sauce is a very thick soy milk (none of this watery vanilla flavoured nonsense), but I’ve used oat milk successfully too.
If you like your broccoli to be soft, I suggest steaming it for a few minutes first. I like it to be a bit crunchy though, so I just chop it up and bung it in as it is.
Broccoli Mac and “Cheese”
- Preheat the oven to 200 C (400 F). Boil some water and pour over the cashews. Leave to sit for about twenty minutes to soften the nuts so they blend more easily to a smooth consistency. Omit this step if you are cool enough to own a super blender like a Vitamix.
- Cook the macaroni until al dente based on the packet’s instructions. Rinse with cold water and drain.
- Liquidise the cashews (drain them first) and garlic with the non-dairy milk. Add the shallots and continue to blend until mostly mixed (a few chunks are okay). Add the rest of the ingredients (except optional extra cheese for sprinkling) and pulse until fully blended together.
- In a large oven proof dish, mix the sauce with the macaroni and broccoli pieces. Cook covered with foil for about 20 minutes and uncovered for a further ten minutes. If you’re planning on adding extra cheese on top, add after you remove the foil.
- Serve hot with salad on on its own for a delicious and healthy alternative to mac and cheese.