Back when I ate dairy, one of my favourite dishes was a vegetarian penne boscaiola: pasta in a creamy sauce with mushrooms, spinach leaves, Spanish onions and lots of fresh parsley.
The good news is that even as a vegan, I can still enjoy a boscaiola using a non-dairy cream that became available in Australia last year. It’s called Mimic, a non-dairy cream subsitute.
Mimic makes a range of vegan creams, but the one that I use for my vegan boscaiola is the unsweetened cream made from almonds and cashew nuts. They make sweetened creamers for making ice creams, smoothies and other desserts, and also creamers for coffee in unsweetened, French vanilla and hazelnut biscotti flavours (which my husband loves in his espresso!)
None of the dairy-replacers from Mimic require refrigeration until they are opened, and Mimic recommend that their product is then used within 14 days (but I’ve definitely left it longer in the fridge without any problems).
The unsweetened cream that I use when making boscaiola is 100% natural, cholesterol free, lactose free, gluten free, non-GMO and soy-free. It also contains no saturated fats and no trans fats.
I’ve made my penne boscaiola for non-vegans using the mimic cream and they say that they can’t believe it’s not regular cream. Most people have also said that they like that it doesn’t leave them feeling heavy or with an upset stomach like regular cream can.
The two things that I love most about Mimic unsweetened cream are that:
1. It behaves just like dairy cream (but doesn’t separate like dairy cream can),
2. It can be substituted in recipes that call for dairy cream without any complicated conversions or adjustments.
Mimic unsweetened cream is available in Australia from most vegan grocery stores. I get mine from Vegan Online or The Cruelty Free Shop where it retails for about $6.50 for 473ml. As the product doesn’t require refrigeration, it can be shipped across Australia.
The photo above is my version of a vegan boscaiola with wholemeal spelt penne, Mimic, spinach leaves, Spanish onions and mushrooms, topped with nutritional yeast and parsley. Yum!