Vegan Jackfruit Bolognese Pasta with Almond Parmesan
Jackfruit is a large fruit that originates from Asia and tropical regions, and is available for sale in the UK in a can, soaked in water. It doesn’t sound too appetising having fruit in savoury dishes, especially ‘pulled pork style jackfruit’ and ‘jackfruit tacos’, but the young jackfruit doesn’t have a sweet, fruity taste that you may expect, and it can be adapted into many recipes due to it’s versatility and capability of absorbing the flavours it’s paired with. I’m not a fan of meat substitutes, but I really enjoy cooking with jackfruit because it’s a completely natural food and creates a great texture.
My boyfriend loves a ragu pasta dish, and if it’s ever on the menu at a restaurant it’ll always be his first choice, but with him being a meat-eater and me eating a plant-based diet, we never make it at home. That’s when I decided to make a ragu style pasta sauce using jackfruit – it breaks down beautifully in the dish creating a ‘meaty’ texture that pulls apart and tastes delicious.
The almond parmesan is also an absolute game-changer! I now make sure I always have some in the kitchen so that I can sprinkle it over everything – pasta, stews, even salads!
With regards to the ingredients, I used Biona Organic for the passata, jackfruit, and capers. I went to a farmers market for the fresh vegetables and olives, and used Garofalo Mafalda Corta pasta made from corn, brown rice and quinoa (you can use any pasta of your choice, but rigatoni works especially well).
I have noted that this dish serves 4, but it completely depends on your pasta portion preference – I tend to have quite a large portion of this, so I would get 3 servings from it, but I have been told that my portions are quite ridiculous!
Jackfruit Bolognese Pasta Recipe
Bolognese Sauce Ingredients:
- 3 large ripe Beef Tomatoes, chopped into cubed chunks
- 1 Red Pepper, deseeded and chopped into inch cubes
- Drizzle Olive oil
- 1 tsp Dried Thyme
- 1 Red Onion, peeled and sliced
- 3 Garlic Cloves, peeled and sliced
- 1 tsp Olive Oil
- Salt and Pepper to season
- 1 400g can Jackfruit, drained
- 1/3 cup Black Olives, pitted and sliced
- 2 cups (400g) Passata
- 1 tsp Capers, chopped
- 2 tsp Dried Basil
- 1/2 tsp Chilli Flakes
- Handful Fresh Basil, roughly chopped
- 250g Pasta
Almond Parmesan Ingredients:
- 1/4 cup Almonds, blended to a flour
- 2 tbsp Nutritional Yeast
- 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1/2 tsp Dried Basil
- Salt and Pepper
Pre heat oven to 190C.
1. Chop the tomatoes and red pepper into rough cube chunks and add to a roasting tray with a drizzle of olive oil, a good pinch of sea salt, and dried thyme. Roast for 20 minutes.
2. Fry the onion in some olive oil and salt in a large saucepan over a medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to fry for a further 2 minutes. Drain the jackfruit, add to the the pan with the dried basil and chopped olives, and use the back of a spoon to break down the jackfruit pieces so they are shredded. Add a little water to prevent the bottom burning if necessary.
3. Add the roasted tomatoes and pepper to the saucepan with the passata. Simmer for about 15-20 minutes, and in the meantime, cook the pasta according to the instructions.
4. To make the almond parmesan, blend the almonds, nutritional yeast, salt, basil and garlic granules to form a flour consistency. Place in a small bowl for the table.
5. Pour the cooked pasta into the saucepan and combine with the chopped fresh basil. Pour into bowls and sprinkle with the almond Parmesan, and garnish with some fresh basil.
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