Asparagus and caramelized red onion pesto

capellini-w-asparagus-pesto asparagus-redonion-pesto

Thin asparagus spears are preferable, as they are less fibrous. If you use thick stalks, you’ll need to peel them before steaming. If you have a steamer basket (or stainless steel colander) that fits over your pasta pot, use it instead of an asparagus steamer. This dish tastes equally well hot, at room temperature, and cold, especially as a midnight snack. We like ours tossed with capellini.

1 large handful (25-30) thin asparagus spears
2-3 red torpedo onions or 1/4 red globe onion
2 teaspoons olive oil
2-3 tablespoons nutritional yeast, to taste
1-2 teaspoons lemon zest, to taste
large pinch of coarse salt
pasta water to thin, if needed

Snap off the woody ends from your asparagus stalks. Thinly slice your onions; there should be enough to loosely pile into a 1/3 measuring cup. If using a red globe onion, cut a few thin-as-possible half moon slices, then cut into small strips about 1/4 inch long. Set up your steamer, your pasta pot (if not using to steam the asparagus), and a small cast iron or nonstick skillet for the onions.

Steam asparagus until fork tender. While the asparagus is steaming, put a teaspoon or two of olive oil into a small skillet over med heat. Sauté the onion until it begins to caramelize, then remove from heat and transfer to your food processor. When the onion and asparagus have both finished cooking, begin heating your liberally salted pasta water.

Cut the asparagus into 1-inch pieces and add to the food processor. Pulse a few times until the mixture is almost puréed. Transfer to a small bowl and stir in the remaining ingredients. If you need additional liquid, add some of the pasta water, a tablespoon at a time. Season to taste with salt and additional lemon zest, if needed.

Drain your pasta, reserving a couple of tablespoons of the cooking water. Add the pesto and gently toss to coat, using some of the reserved water if it’s too thick. Season with cracked pepper and coarse salt at the table.

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Fettuccine Alfredo with Marsala Mushrooms


This silky alfredo sauce comes together very quickly, perfect for a weeknight meal. If you already have a cooked potato on hand, you can prepare the sauce in the time it takes to cook the fettuccine noodles.  


16 ounces fettuccine, cooked and drained

1/2 cup cashews
2 cups water
1 small potato, cooked and peeled
1 1/2 tablespoons vegan butter
1/2 – 2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
2 teaspoons granulated onion
juice of 1 lemon
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons white wine
fresh ground black pepper, to taste

8 ounces button or cremini mushrooms, cleaned and trimmed
1/3 cup Marsala wine

chives and vegan grated Parmesan (such as Go Veggie), to garnish


Add water, cashews, and potato to blender, and puree until smooth. Add butter and flour to pan. Stir constantly for three minutes over medium heat. Add cashew mixture, seasonings, lemon juice, and white wine. Stir frequently for three to five minutes, until sauce is thickened.

In another pan, cook mushrooms in Marsala over high heat, until most of the wine is gone. Combine sauce and pasta, and top with mushrooms and chives. 

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Recipes from Vegan in 30 Minutes

The recipes from our cooking class, Vegan in 30 Minutes

Spinach Pesto

Chickpea Noodle Soup


Lentil Salad

Lentil Tofu Curry

Grandma’s Barley Apples

Bonus recipe!

Simplified Samosas

Other items of interest

Don’t forget to use Amazon Smile to support the Refuge! 

Instant Pot pressure cooker – It might seem like an investment, but if you stop buying canned beans, it will pay for itself.

The Sexy Vegan cookbook

Isa Does It! cookbook

Vegan Pressure Cooking cookbook

Also, check out their awesome blogs:

The Post Punk Kitchen

The Sexy Vegan *His 3/3 Podcast is about pressure cooking!

JL Goes Vegan

Ultimate Tofu Tip – Podcast episode from the Sexy Vegan

Vegan Mentor Program

Ivy.Ace.MamaWe are pleased to offer a vegan mentor program! Our program is designed to provide tailored one-on-one mentorship to anyone considering going vegan. If you’re interested in learning more about veganism, please contact us! Our vegan mentors are ready to provide you with personal resources and answer all of your questions. Please email us at .


Interested in being a mentor? Email us at .



Q: Can I meet with someone in person or is this program only virtual?

A: Either! Just let us know your preference and we’ll set you up with a mentor that will be a good fit. Our mentors are happy to correspond via email, meetup in person, or both. You mentor can potentially meet with you in person or walk through a grocery store together to help identify vegan options. However, we recognize that everyone is busy, and if you are simply looking for online support, we can provide that.


Q: Is there a deadline for signing up?

A: No, there is not a deadline. The program is ongoing.


Q: Does signing up mean that I’m committing to going vegan?

A: No. Signing up means that we will provide you with a mentor that will be there to support you no matter what stage you are at. Meat-eaters, vegetarians, and veg-curious people are all welcome!

Track your steps to help raise funds for the Refuge!

RsQ banner shot

Do you walk or run, and have an iOS or Android smartphone? If so, you can help raise funds for The Refuge when you use the ResQwalk app.

ResQwalk is a free mobile app that tracks activity such as walking, running or biking, as long as the activity can be measured by GPS and involves a speed of less than 14 mph. Each month, ResQwalk will distribute funds to The Refuge based on miles walked.

Visit the ResQwalk FAQ here.

You can download the iOS version here, and the Android version here.