Halloween is not just a one day event for me. Decorations go up in early September, regardless of lingering summery weather or unspoken rules of neighborhood conduct. By this time, while everyone else is finally getting into the spirit, I’ve already been rocking my skeleton shirt in public for well over a month. Don’t forget the little pumpkin I’ve been walking, clad from paws to nose in bright orange jack-o-lantern attire.
Other people might celebrate the holiday with an enchantingly festive meal on the 31st, but why wait until the witching hour to create some magic in the kitchen? A good example is this ghoulish version of mac and cheese that’s become a daily staple around here during the past few weeks.
Black as night, homemade pasta takes on a ghastly ashen hue thanks to a touch of natural witchcraft… Also known as edible coconut charcoal. Just a touch is enough to tint a whole pound of pasta without leaving a trace of off-flavors, yielding a stunning visual impact without sacrificing taste. Plated atop rich cheese sauce bolstered by creamy pumpkin puree, the stark color contrast is bright and bold enough to get anyone into a mischievous mood.
What are you waiting for? The time is ripe to get down with your witches. Invite your besties over and treat them to a wickedly good meal.
Black Mac and Pumpkin Cheese
Classic mac and cheese gets a mischievous twist with black pasta and a pumpkin-enriched sauce. Perfect for Halloween but delicious all year round, it's hard to resist such an enchanting dish.
- 250 Grams All-Purpose Flour
- 5 Grams Food-Grade Coconut Charcoal
- 90 Grams Aquafaba
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
Pumpkin Cheese Sauce:
- 2 Tablespoons Vegan Butter
- 1 Clove Garlic, Minced
- 1 Tablespoon Chickpea Flour
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon Dijon Mustard
- 1 Cup Plain, Unsweetened Non-Dairy Milk
- 1 (14-Ounce) Can Pumpkin Puree
- 2/3 Cup Nutritional Yeast
- Fresh Basil, as Needed
- To make the black pasta, whisk the all-purpose flour and coconut charcoal together in a small bowl. Transfer the dry ingredients to your pasta maker with the macaroni extrusion disc installed*. Slowly drizzle in the aquafaba and process according to the manufacturer's instructions.
- Gently toss the freshly extruded pasta with additional flour to prevent them from sticking or clumping together. Let stand in a cool, dry place for at least 1 hour for best results.
- When you're ready to cook the dish, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the noodles and cook for only 1 - 3 minutes, until the noodles begin to float. Quickly drain and immediately rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Gently toss with olive oil and set aside.
- Meanwhile, prepare the pumpkin cheese sauce by placing a medium saucepan over medium heat on the stove. Melt the butter and begin sauteing the garlic. Once aromatic (about 2 - 3 minutes,) sprinkle in the chickpea flour and salt. Whisk to incorporate and follow quickly with the mustard and nutritional yeast. Whisk vigorously to make sure there are no lumps. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to a gentle simmer.
- Add the pumpkin puree and nutritional yeast, stirring to combine. Once smooth, cook for an additional 2 - 3 minutes until hot all the way through.
- To serve, divide the pumpkin sauce evenly between 3 - 4 plates and top with equal portions of the cooked noodles. Finish with fresh basil, as desired, and serve immediately.
*If you don't want to make your own pasta from scratch, you can use 8 ounces of dried elbow noodles instead. You can lightly tint them black by mixing coconut charcoal into the cooking water, but it won't be as bold as noodles made with the powder mixed in.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 417Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 379mgCarbohydrates: 66gFiber: 9gSugar: 6gProtein: 20g
All nutritional information presented within this site are intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information on BitterSweetBlog.com should only be used as a general guideline. This information is provided as a courtesy and there is no guarantee that the information will be completely accurate. Even though I try to provide accurate nutritional information to the best of my ability, these figures should still be considered estimations.
11 thoughts on “Black Magic”
What fun! You’re always introducing me to new ingredients, like this coconut charcoal! Wow! That dish is beautiful. Years ago we’d go to Baskin and Robbins as a family (when I was growing up) and I’d get pumpkin ice cream topped with black licorice ice cream! I thought that was pretty cool!
What an incredible combination! You really don’t see black licorice ice cream these days… Or much black licorice at all. I know it’s a polarizing flavor but I happen to love it. We should start a black licorice resurrection.
That looks so pretty! As for liquorice, as a Finn I grew up with liquorice, and it is everywhere in Finland, in cakes, sweets, alcoholic drinks , you name it.
Happy Halloween Hannah.
I wish licorice was more common in the US. I think there would be more love for it if it was just a more common option to begin with!
I’m sure it tastes amazing but I have to part company with you on this. I can do without black licorice, too. What a Scrooge I am (although that’s switching seasons.) :-)
[…] Blog. She made her own black pasta, and used canned pumpkin as the base for the sauce underneath. Her recipe is vegan, but we took an easier […]
That looks awesome. Going to seek out that coconut charcoal. You have inspired me
Thank you! It’s such a fun ingredient. I can’t wait to see what you do with it.
Such a fun recipe and can’t wait to find coconut charcoal. Thanks!
Such a nice contrast of colours in this dish. I bet they too taste delicious, I can imagine the pumkin cheese flavour, mmmmmmm
[…] to include small amounts of food-grade charcoal as food coloring for various recipes, including pasta and pizza crust, but for daily use, it’s much more beneficial as a topical ingredient. […]