Pasta is without a doubt one of the best cupboard staples when you’re starving and time-starved too! Here is one of my favourite Tagliatelle recipes. It’s always a great hit with the whole family.

Veg Tagliatelle

Creamy Pesto Tagliatelle with Mock Chicken

Serves 4
Home-made pesto is amazingly versatile. I often use left-overs in sandwiches, salad dressing, marinades… Its delicious, fragrant flavour is undoubtedly superior to anything you can buy in a jar. But if you are really in a hurry Meridian, Suma and Zest all sell it ready-made too.

Pasta for four – about 90g each, depending on your appetites
1-2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 red pepper, deseeded and chopped
300g chicken-style pieces (or use a 420g tin butter beans)
3 tbsp dairy-free pesto
250ml oat cream
salt and freshly ground black pepper
toasted pine nuts and basil leaves

For the pesto:
1 large bunch of basil leaves
about 1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp pine nuts
1 small clove of garlic, crushed
1 tbsp grated vegan cheese (optional)
olive oil

Pound basil leaves, sea salt and pine nuts in a pestle and mortar. Add the crushed garlic, vegan cheese and keep mashing it all together until you get a vibrant green pulp. Stir in a generous glug of olive oil. I wish I could give more exact amounts but I don’t ever measure the quantities for pesto… it always seems to taste great!

In a large pot of boiling water cook enough Tagliatelle for four people. My mum used to add a vegetable stock cube to the cooking water which gives a wonderful flavour to the pasta.
While the pasta is cooking, heat some oil in a sauté pan and fry one chopped red pepper and 300g chicken-style pieces (or butterbeans, if you prefer) for five minutes. Add 3 tbsp of pesto and a 250ml carton of oat or soya cream. Simmer for a couple of minutes and season with plenty of freshly ground black pepper, salt and possibly some crumbled vegetable stock cube. Stir into the drained pasta, adjust the seasoning to taste and garnish with toasted pine nuts and basil leaves. For a tasty lunch or dinner, serve the pasta with a big bowl of tomato salad and crusty garlic bread.


This recipe was first published in the April 2014 issue of Vegetarian Living:
VL April 2014
This recipe has been entered into the #BettaRecipe competition by Betta Living. For  more information and details on how to enter click here.