Healthy Hollywood: Fab Food Friday – Have A Happy Vegan Holiday!
First Published: December 16, 2011 1:01 PM EST Credit: Getty Images
NEW YORK CITY, N.Y. -- Call it a trend or a lifestyle makeover, but either way being vegan is a Hollywood phenomenon! Alicia Silverstone, Natalie Portman, Anne Hathaway are just a few of the famous faces saying “no thanks” to meat, dairy, and eggs. The vegan movement (is a vegetarian diet that excludes all animal-derived ingredients) is rapidly moving into the mainstream.
“Vegans can eat a variety of delicious dishes from Fettuccine Alfredo to Hot Fudge Sundaes – as long as everything is made without animal products. The best part is that vegan ingredients are naturally low in saturated fat, cholesterol-free, and packed with protein, fiber, and nutrients,” states vegan chef Chloe Coscarelli, winner of the Food Network’s “Cupcake Wars.”
So, how is a vegan supposed to survive the holidays and not insult all their meat-loving party hosts? After all, if your family is anything like mine, they love their red meat – and the veggies are certainly not the night’s star dish. “The best way to make the host aware of your vegan diet is by offering to bring a vegan dish or dessert to the party that everyone can enjoy. That way, you’ll have a back-up dish to turn to in case your Aunt Mimi makes a vegan casserole that has “just a little bit” of pork in it. Bottom line: don’t be shy to come prepared!” suggests Chloe.
Chloe shares with Healthy Hollywood one of her favorite festive vegan dishes.
Creamy Pumpkin Penne with Crispy Sage and Toasted Pecans Serves 4 to 6
1 pound penne, cooked according to package directions
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, roughly chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 (14-ounce) can organic pumpkin OR 2 cups roasted butternut squash
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups soy, almond, or rice milk
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 teaspoons maple syrup
3 teaspoons sea salt
.5 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons canola oil
8 fresh sage leaves, whole
.5 cup toasted pecans, roughly chopped
3 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Add penne and cook according to package directions. Drain and return to pot.
To make the Pumpkin Cream Sauce: In a large skillet, heat oil and sauté onions until soft. Add garlic and let cook a few more minutes. Remove from heat. In a blender, puree the onion mixture, pumpkin, tomato paste, nondairy milk, nutmeg, maple syrup, salt, and pepper until smooth.
To make the Crispy Sage: Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a small skillet until a small piece of sage sizzles when added to the oil. Fry the remaining sage leaves 4 at a time, flipping once, until crispy (about 1 minute total). Watch the sage leaves carefully to make sure that they do not burn. Let them drain on a paper towel and season lightly with salt.
To assemble the pasta: Toss hot pasta with Pumpkin Cream Sauce, toasted pecans, and fresh sage. Garnish with crispy sage and dig in!
For more vegan recipes, head to www.chefchloe.com
Copyright 2013 by NBC Universal, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.