Leah Vanderveldt is a wellness writer and recipe developer based in Brooklyn. She’s the author of the cookbooks The New Nourishing and The New Porridge and loves learning and writing about food, travel, body image, meditation, tarot, and much more. She’s the former Food Editor of mindbodygreen.com and is certified in Culinary Nutrition from the Natural Gourmet Institute. You can find her cooking up vegetable-centric meals and exploring wellness in ways that are affordable, fun, and a little woo-woo over on her blog, The Nourish Exchange and Instagram @leah.vander.
We collaborated with our fellow plant-lovers, Banza and Leah Vandervelt, to create tasty recipes powered by plants. Why do we love Banza? Banza is pasta made from chickpeas with high protein and fiber, and it's delicious. This dish blends our almondmilk, cashews and nutritional yeast for a creamy sauce without the dairy.
- 1 whole head of garlic, bottom chopped off so the cloves are exposed but the head of garlic is still generally in one piece and the outer skins are still around the majority of the cloves.
- Olive oil
- ½ cup soaked cashews, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup Unsweetened Almondmilk
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- 1 cup frozen and thawed artichoke hearts, cut into quarters and heated in the microwave or in a small pan with a little olive oil.
- 3 big handfuls of fresh baby spinach
- 1 box Banza Cavatappi
- Fresh ground black pepper, to serve
- Red pepper flakes, to serve
Heat the oven to 400°F. Start soaking the cashews if you haven’t already. Drizzle a small piece of aluminum foil with olive oil and place the head of garlic cut side-down on it and wrap it into a small parcel. Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes until the cloves are soft and fragrant. Let it cool before handling.
In a food processor or blender combine soaked and drained cashews, Almondmilk, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, salt, and all of the roasted garlic cloves, squeezed from their papery skins. Puree until smooth. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and some black pepper as needed.
Cook the pasta in salty water until al dente and drain. While pasta is cooking heat the artichoke hearts either in the microwave or in a small pan with a little olive oil for 2 minutes, until warm.
In the same pot you cooked the pasta in (while it’s still warm, but you’ve emptied it of all the water) add the pasta back in and stir in the spinach, artichokes hearts, and sauce. Place over a low heat until spinach is just wilted.
Serve warm with more black pepper and red chili flakes.