This week has been all sorts of crazy and weird and it’s only Wednesday. I think some simple comfort food is in order.
I’ve never had spaghetti carbonara which is what this recipe is based on and that’s because it has two things I’m not a huge fan of: peas and bacon. I absolutely LOVE the smell of cooking bacon but when it comes to eating it? No thank you. And peas are just mushy no matter how you cook them so I avoid those as well.
So why make recipe about something I’ve never had and includes things I don’t really like? Shiitake bacon. Yes, that would be bacon made out of shitake mushrooms. I’ve seen them before and wanted to try them out on my own and I thought pasta would be a good vehicle for them.
I was right.
I lightened it up by using zoodles instead of spaghetti, but you could totally use regular pasta and I made my cream sauce with cashews instead of actual cream. If you make the sauce and the “bacon” ahead of time all you have to do is throw everything together. And even if you don’t, this meal still comes together in under 30 minutes.
- 2-3 large zucchini, spiralized (or one package of spaghetti)
- 1 cup of raw cashews, soaked (overnight or in hot water for at least 30 minutes)
- 1/2 cup onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
- juice of half a lemon
- 1 tsp sea salt (more to taste)
- 1/2 tsp black pepper (more to taste)
- chopped parsley, optional topping
For the Shiitake Bacon:
- 2 packages of shiitake mushrooms (mine were 5 oz each)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 375 and line a baking pan with parchment paper or a Silpat. Combine all the ingredients for the bacon in a large bowl and toss to coat the mushrooms. Spread out evenly on the pan and bake for 10 minutes. Take the mushrooms out and toss them again and cook for another 10 minutes. Check to see if they’re crispy and if not toss and cook another 10 minutes or let them cool if they’re done.
- While the bacon is cooking. Combine everything but the zucchini into a blender or food processor and blend until completely smooth. Set aside.
- Spiralize the zucchini and heat up some olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the zucchini to the pan and saute for about 5 to 7 minutes until the noodles are a little softer. Add more olive oil if they start to stick.
- Lower the heat and add in about half of the cream sauce. Toss to coat the noodles and add more sauce as needed. Once everything is coated remove from heat and serve. Top each plate with a generous portion of shiitake bacon and chopped parsley!