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chorizo spiced rigatoni bake
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4.6 from 10 votes

Vegan Chorizo Spiced Rigatoni Bake

A deliciously spiced baked rigatoni dish, packed with garlic, smoked paprika and cayenne pepper. It's spicy, creamy and baked to crispy perfection in all the right places. Not to mention - it's 100% vegan!
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian, Mexican, Spanish
Keyword: vegan chorizo spiced rigatoni bake
Servings: 4
Calories: 442kcal
Author: Richard Makin

Equipment

  • High Speed Blender

Ingredients

For the "Cream"

  • 80 g unsalted cashews or sunflower seeds (or 200ml vegan cream - see subs section above)
  • 120 g water

For the Chorizo Spice Blend

  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1.5 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp flaky sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 4 black peppercorns

For the Rigatoni Bake

  • 300 g rigatoni (make sure it's a vegan variety with no eggs)
  • 1 onion (small, finely chopped)
  • 2 cloves of garlic (peeled and crushed)
  • 2 tsp chorizo spice blend (as above)
  • 350 ml passata
  • 100 ml reserved pasta water
  • 1/2 batch of school night vegan mozzarella (or your favourite store-bought vegan cheese)

Instructions

To Make the "Cream"

  • Boil a kettle of water. Place the cashews or sunflower seeds in a medium bowl. Cover with around a litre of water and cover the bowl with a plate or a lid. Leave to soak for at least 1 hour.
  • Once soaked, drain off the water and reserve the soaked nuts/seeds. Place the nuts/seeds in the cup of a high speed blender along with 120g fresh water (do not use the water you soaked the nuts/seeds in). Blend until completely smooth and set aside.
  • If you have access to a good vegan cream alternative and would rather use this, skip the steps above and measure out 200ml of vegan cream. Set aside.

To Make the Chorizo Spice Blend

  • Place a small, dry frying pan over a medium heat. Add the cumin and fennel seeds to the pan and toast gently until fragrant. Do not allow them to burn - stir them constantly.
  • Remove the seeds from the pan and place in a high speed blender along with all the other chorizo spice blend ingredients. Set aside.

To Make the Rigatoni Bake

  • Preheat your oven to 200c/180c fan.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Add the rigatoni and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile place a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil and bring to temperature.
  • Add the onion to the pan and fry gently for a few minutes before adding the garlic. Fry for another few minutes and add 2 tsp of the chorizo spice blend. Stir to coat the onions.
  • Add the passata and bring to a simmer. Cover the pan with a lid and allow to bubble away nicely, stirring occasionally, until the passata has reduced, thickened and darkened in colour slightly (around 8-10 minutes).
  • By this point, your pasta should be almost 'al dente'. Being sure to reserve around 100ml of pasta water, drain off the rigatoni and toss in a little oil to keep it from sticking together. Add the reserved pasta water to the sauce in the frying pan.
  • Stirring often, allow the sauce to simmer for a further few minutes until smooth and glossy. Finally, add the cashew/sunflower cream or vegan cream alternative and stir well to combine. Add the sauce to the drained pasta and stir to combine.
  • Transfer the pasta and sauce to an ovenproof dish (I used a deep, cast iron skillet) and top with some SNV mozzarella (or your favourite store-bought vegan cheese).
  • Place in the oven and bake for 35 minutes until golden brown and crisp on top.

Nutrition

Calories: 442kcal | Carbohydrates: 74g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 617mg | Potassium: 741mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 868IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 55mg | Iron: 5mg