Creamy Cashew Sambal with Gluten-Free Spaghetti

Recipe courtesy of Chef Alex Marquez.

Chef Alex Marquez creates this intriguingly spiced gluten-free and vegetarian pasta, using cashews to help develop a creamy sauce. Crunchy pan-fried Brussels sprouts and piquant fresh mint finish this lively dish.

3 pounds Barilla Gluten-Free Spaghetti
olive oil, as needed
1 tablespoon peeled, minced fresh ginger
10 cloves garlic
4 1/2 ounces blanched unsalted cashews
2 cups white wine
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
salt and pepper
9 tablespoons sambal chili paste
120 leaves fresh mint, julienned
30 brussel sprouts, quartered
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
  1. Cook the Barilla pasta for half the time indicated on the package. Drain pasta and drizzle with some olive oil to prevent from sticking. Place pasta flat on sheet trays or hotel pans and cool in a blast chiller. Alternatively, cool it down in a walk-in cooler. Store in zip lock bags or sealed plastic container; refrigerate and use within several hours.
  2. In a large saute pan, warm some oil and saute the ginger and garlic until the garlic begins to brown. Add the cashews and stir. Pour in the wine and let it reduce. Stir in the cream, season with salt and pepper, and let it simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the sambal paste.
  3. Working in batches, puree the sauce mixture and pass it through a strainer, discarding the solids. Set the sambal sauce aside.

For each serving, to order:

  1. Heat some oil in a pan and pan-fry 5 sprout quarters until browned and crispy. Remove to a paper towel to drain.
  2. Reheat about 1 cup pasta in simmering water. Drain and add it to a pan with some of the sambal sauce. Toss them together with a pinch of mint and plate.
  3. Garnish with another pinch of mint, 2 teaspoons parmesan, and the fried sprouts.