Horseradish Mac and Seeds

If you like to eat food that burns your nose, then, boy, have you stumbled upon the right recipe.

When I was just a mere child and had hardly an inkling of what horseradish was, I loved horseradish cheese. It was kind of like sharp cheddar cheese but it had the added benefit of burning your nostrils.

I think my dad first bought the cheese for himself, but kept buying it because he was amazed that an eight year old liked horseradish. This was probably the first type of *spicy* that I developed a taste for.

For those of you who haven’t had horseradish, it is similar to wasabi (and a lot of the wasabi at sushi places is actually horseradish with green food dye). For those of you who haven’t had either horseradish or wasabi, the closest type of flavor I can compare it to is spicy brown mustard, but more … nose burning sensation.

As child me had figured out, horseradish surprisingly pairs well with cheese, so why not make a horseradish mac n cheese?

Of course, everything on this site is vegan, so we will be making the sauce with a sunflower seed base. In fact, I was inspired to make this using leftover vegan sour cream from the vegan knishes.

I will also provide instructions for grating fresh horseradish, but store bought horseradish will work just fine!

Recipe

Makes 8 servings
Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients

1 1/4 cup homemade sunflower sour cream (see recipe here)*
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons water
1 large carrot, roasted
2-6 tablespoons grated horseradish
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

1 pound pasta of choice (I used shells)
1 small bunch greens of choice (I used beet greens)

Instructions

  1. First, roast the carrot. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Peel the carrot and wrap in tinfoil. Place the carrot in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes. Alternatively, you can opt to blend the raw carrot in the sauce, but the flavor and texture is better with the roasted carrot.
  2. If you do not have grated horseradish, you can grate the horseradish while the carrot is roasting. Peel the whole horseradish and grate with a microplane or cheese grater. This will sting your eyes! It’s like chopping onions times 1,000. If you have safety goggles, use them.
  3. One horseradish will yield a little over one cup of grated horseradish. Top the leftovers with vinegar and store in a sealed jar in the fridge. It will last for one to two weeks. The longer it is stored the less potent it will be.
  4. When the carrots are almost done baking, start boiling a large pot of salted water. Once the water is boiling, cook the pasta according to the instructions.
  5. While the pasta is cooking, blend the pasta sauce. Blend the sour cream, nutritional yeast, carrot, and 1/4 cup of water first. Then, add water a little add a time until the desired consistency is achieved. This may depend on the thickness of the sour cream, which may have thickened in the fridge. The sauce will thicken once it is cooked, so keep that in mind.
  6. Add the horseradish and salt a little at a time and keep blending, tasting as you go. I would recommend starting the horseradish at one tablespoon and adding one tablespoon at a time until the sauce is horseradishy enough. When I tested this, I added 6 tablespoons of freshly grated horseradish, but many people have different tolerance levels for horseradish and even the potency of different radishes may vary. The flavor will mellow out a little when cooked with the pasta.
  7. Drain the pasta, leaving a small amount (about 1 tablespoon) of pasta water in the pot. Pour the sauce directly onto the pasta in the same pot. At this point, also add the greens. Cook on low heat until the sauce is warm and slightly thickened and the greens are wilted. This will take as little as 5 minutes if you have quick cooking greens.
  8. That’s it! You have some nose burny mac n cheese! This stores in the fridge for about 5 days.

Notes

*Don’t mind that picture of that enticing horseradish intimidate you! It is just having a little relaxation day before being grated to little yummy bits.
*If you don’t have leftover sour cream on hand (which means that you DIDN’T make the vegan knishes), replace the sour cream in the recipe with 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons water, 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds, 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.

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