Growing up in a fairly traditional Jewish and thereby kosher home meat meals were never accompanied by rich, cream or cheese based sauces. It wasn’t until my mid-teens and admittedly non-kosher eating that I discovered the world of butter based sauces coupled with meat dishes. With all do respect, this concept grossed me out. My palette had been trained to appreciate tomato based or citrus sauces coupled with red meat and poultry. I didn’t feel I had been missing out and I do believe that my waistline has remained reasonably thin as a result of this omission.
Nevertheless, as my father smoked a turkey breast for dinner the other night in our outdoor smoker, and as my mother flash-steamed a slew of broccoli and baby artichokes—I knew a creamy sauce was missing. After all—if there is absolutely any better coupling than peanut butter and jelly it is…broccoli and cheese. Knowing my endeavor would fall short of cream, butter, and cheese, I needed to use my household vegan resources.
Behold, nutritional yeast.
Now, if you come upon nutritional yeast in your local natural food store, you may be uncomfortably surprised by the looks of it. The truth is: nutritional yeast looks like fish food. Flakey and awkward and often packaged in a shake bottle—just like the shrimp or sardine flavored stuff that goes into a goldfish bowl. Fear not though, the results are absolutely fantastic. Creamy, cheesy, and flavorful with an impressive list of nutrients like vitamin B12 (yup, the vitamin in red meat!)
(Adapted from Dailygarnish.com)
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 T Earth Balance (or any natural, vegan butter-substitute)
1 C water
1/4 t garlic powder
1/4 t onion powder
1/4 t paprika
2 T millet flour*
*My home in Piermont is mostly gluten-free as both my parents have a gluten intolerance. You can use millet or brown rice flour, or arrowroot powder to thicken sauce or regular WW flour would work, too!
1. Melt earth balance in medium sized saucepan, add water and bring to a light boil.
2. Add spices and nutritional yeast. Whisk in flour, bring to a boil, and simmer.
I doused this sauce all over steamed artichoke, roasted potatoes, and broccoli. Do the same or use it as a perfect sauce for vegan and natural mac & cheese!