Mac & Cheese is way far from the middle-eastern food I grow up eating. But living in the U.S for so many years I learned that for a huge amount of the population this is by far one of the most popular signature dishes on the American menu. I have never really cooked mac and cheese probably because cheese was never a big part of my life. BUT now that my kids are well exposed to the American food culture and mac and cheese is the star of the show at every birthday party or even school lunches. I had no choice but trying it myself so that my kids don't feel deprived by not eating the real thing. The first step was looking for the right vegan cheese that melts and tastes as close as possible to the real deal. Whole-Foods was my answer of course, although almost every known supper market today has a nice selection of dairy free products. The sauce by itself without the cheese is nice, but only when the cheese is added you feel like its the right flavor and texture. This is really a way healthier and guilt-free version of cooking this rich cheesy sauce since the main base is pure vegetables. You can even take it to the next level and bake it in the oven with an extra cheese on top. But for me, it was perfect just like that. This is just another proof that when we choose to feed our body and our precious children differently it is doable and possible and it is DELICIOUS!
1). Bring water to a boil, cut veggies into medium chunks, add the cashews, and cook for about 15 minutes until vegetables are fork tender.
2). Cook pasta, save 1 cup water of the cooking liquids, drain and set aside.
3). Once the veggies are ready and still warm, transfer to a food processor along with the seasonings, cheese, and 1/2 of the amount of the saved pasta cooking liquids. Process until very smooth! Add water or cheese as needed for the best consistency.
4). Combine drained pasta with the sauce, mix well, serve and add some paprika on top.