Last Updated on February 14, 2021
This is one of the best creations that we’re truly proud of! Fettuccine with Shiitake & Orange Truffle Cream Sauce is a dish with unique combination of ingredients. The creamy cashew sauce is infused with orange and truffle oil, and shiitake adds a rich earthy tone to the taste. If you are looking for a pasta recipe that wows everyone, this is it!
Using Fruits in Savory Dishes
When we think of food in Japan, traditional or not, fruits are not something we incorporate in savory dishes. Fruits are simply served as dessert. We often find yuzu [柚子] used in food which is a Japanese citrus, but the taste is far from being sweet. The Americans seem to love eating fruits (or sweet components) in savory dishes. To name a few, strawberries in salad, pears in salad, orange in salad, figs in sauce, cranberries in sauce, apples in sausage etc..
In our kitchen, we don’t make such dishes mentioned above but often use citrusy fruits (variety of oranges and grapefruits) into savory food. They add freshness and just enough tangy-ness with a hint of sweetness.
Orange Truffle Cream Sauce
The base of this sauce is cashew cream. When it comes to rich and creamy vegan white sauce, cashews are always our choice. For this particular one, we soaked them for 8 hours (over night.) Typically, 4-6 hours should be fine for cashews to be soft enough to make smooth & creamy consistency sauce.
The recipe should make more than enough cashew cream than what we use here which is 3/4 cup. Keep the leftover in the fridge to make other dishes or you can also freeze them.
Now, the fun part is the addition of orange and truffle oil. For orange, we use Navel orange which has a perfect balance of acidity and sweetness. We find Navel oranges better suit for cooking. Valencia orange should be fine, too although it may get a bit sweeter. Blood orange…? Not so sure…
We use both juice and zest to incorporate into the cashew cream. While the juice is delicious enough, the zest has more of the essence of orange which intensifies the orange-ness. You can taste and smell the orange in every bite of creamy pasta! Then the unique flavor gets even more interesting with the use of truffle oil! We can’t explain how amazing the flavor is when all of them are combined together!
The choice of Mushroom
We choose shiitake for this dish for more umami component compare to the regular mushrooms like cremini. But if you’re not a fan of shiitake, you can substitute with cremini. Although you know how much we love using maitake mushrooms, I don’t think it’d be a good choice for this particular dish. If you consider exploring maitake, try Soy Sauce “Butter” Maitake or Maitake Rice, instead.
The choice of Pasta
For us, the equation works as “creamy pasta = flat pasta.” So we use fettuccine to catch all the goodness of the luxurious sauce. Is it just us that the thicker the pasta is the more satisfying it is?
Go check out other creamy pasta recipes you may enjoy!
Linguine with Mushroom Tomato Cream Sauce
Fettuccine with shiitake & Orange Truffle Cream Sauce
- 1 cup raw unsalted cashews
- 2 cups water
Cashew Cream (Total of 3/4 cup cashew cream is use for the recipe)
- Soaked cashews (see the above)
- 3/4 cup cold water
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 cup diced yellow onion
- 10 shiitake caps thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (about 1-2 navel oranges)
- 2 cups water
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1 pound fettuccine
- 3/4 cup cashew cream
- 1/2 tbsp orange zest (plus more for serving)
- Truffle oil (for serving)
- Soak cashews in water for 8 hours or overnight.
- Make the cashew cream. In a high-speed blender, combine soaked cashews, cold water, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, and salt. Blend for 1-2 minutes until smooth. Set aside.
- In a large pot, start boiling water for cooking fettuccine.
- Meanwhile, start preparing sauce. Heat up a large frying pan at medium high heat. Pour extra virgin olive oil and add garlic. Cook for 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Next, add yellow onion and cook for 2-3 minutes until softened. Then add shiitake and cook for another 2-3 minutes until caramelized.
- Add orange juice to deglaze the pan then add water. Season with salt and black pepper. Bring to boil then reduce the heat to continue to simmer.
- Meanwhile, start cooking fettuccine in salted water for 8-10 minutes (or follow the instruction on the package.)
- 2 minutes before the fettuccine is done, add cashew cream and orange zest to the sauce. When it starts to thicken add a small amount of pasta water.
- Add fettuccine to the sauce. Turn off the heat and give a quick toss.
- Serve with some orange zest and a drizzle of truffle oil for the finishing touch.
- The recipe should make more than enough cashew cream than what we use here which is 3/4 cup. Keep the leftover in the fridge to make other dishes or you can also freeze them.