This is one of my go-to easy weeknight dinners when I’m avoiding dairy (and even when I’m not). It comes together so quickly, hits all the right flavor notes, and all you need for the sauce is pasta water, lemon, and miso.
A quick note about pasta water—always reserve some! It’s the key to really flavorful pasta. The starchiness of the water (from the pasta) will help all of the flavors in your dish cling to the noodles. Here, the pasta water acts as the base for a silky sauce, taking on the flavors of the miso and lemon. Kale, meaty shiitakes, garlic, and nutritional yeast are a perfect complement of flavors and textures.
1/2 lb pasta ( I used gluten-free brown rice pasta)
3.5 oz shiitakes, sliced thinly
1 bunch curly kale, leaves sliced thinly across like ribbons
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic
1 cup reserved pasta water
1 tbs miso paste (I prefer Miso Master Mellow Miso)
2 tbs nutritional yeast
- Prep ingredients: Slices shiitakes and kale, peel garlic clove (leave whole), and set aside.
- Cook pasta: Bring pot of well-salted water to a boil, add pasta, and cook until al dente (reserve 1 cup of pasta water when done)
- Cook shiitakes and kale: While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and add shiitakes. Sauté until they start to caramelize a bit (about 10-12 minutes). Add kale and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes, grate garlic clove over the kale and mushrooms, add just a tiny splash of the pasta water (you’ll need most of it for the sauce), season with salt and pepper, sauté a minute or two longer, and set aside in a bowl.
- Prep sauce: In a separate bowl, add the miso paste, juice of just less than the lemon, zest of half the lemon, and a splash of the 1-2 tbs of pasta water (enough to whisk and dissolve the miso into the liquid)
- Finish: Add the remaining pasta water to the pan used for shiitakes and kale. Bring to a simmer, stir in the miso mixture, add pasta and toss to coat with sauce. Add kale and shiitakes and combine. Sprinkle nutritional yeast over pasta and toss to combine. Serve and squeeze any remaining lemon over top if desired.