Ever since I was introduced to Penne alla Vodka that our next door Italian restaurant serves I've been addicted. But with all the cream and oil and who knows what else they put in it to get me hooked, I've stayed away from it and finally found an alternative recipe for it by the lovely Kris Carr. This recipe uses no cream (well, actually yes, dairy-free cashew cream) and is very simple to make.
Brown rice pasta (or any pasta of your liking)
1 jar pasta sauce
2-3 cloves minced garlic (I also added some shallot)
1 cup frozen organic peas (didn't have)
2 heaping tablespoons capers
¼ – ½ cup raw, unsalted cashews
½-1 cup water (to blend cashews)
Splash of vodka (2-4 cap fulls or an ⅛ of a cup)
Salt & pepper to taste
Bring water to a boil and add a dash of salt to keep the pasta from sticking. Once the water is bubbling, add the pasta. Follow the directions on the package; it should take about 12 minutes or so. To make the sauce, use your favorite jarred marinara as the base. Pour into a saucepan and add the garlic, peas, capers, plus a drizzle of olive oil and splash of vodka. In a high-speed blender, blend the cashews and water until they are creamy. Add more or less water to suit your desires. Pour the cashew cream into the sauce and stir. Cook on medium to low heat for about 15 minutes.
To get all the tomato sauce from the jar I shake it with a little bit of red wine and water and pour it to the sauce. I don't like anything to go to waste.