VB6 : Yo Sis…. (Basil and Tomato Pasta)


she’s got that VIBE (she’s got that vibe) VIIIBBEEE (that vegan vibe) VIIIIIBBBBBEEEEEEE!

Nope, not me: My big sis who texted me this week to tell me that’s she’s going to try VB6.

Even though I consider myself a vegan officianado (I have three cookbooks and a t-shirt), I hadn’t heard of this before, but check it out:

Mark Bittman's VB6

Mark Bittman’s VB6 (don’t click to look inside, I blatantly stole this image from Amazon, I’m hoping I won’t go to jail if I post the hyperlink here)

There’s a whole book about being plant based before 6pm.

Super cool.

Now, you guys all know that I’m down with this whole vegan thing because I think pigs, cows, chickens, even tuna and monk fish in the right light, are cute*. But anything that gets people thinking about an alternative way of eating, for health or any other reasons, is good with me.

Sooooo, any hoo, Big Sis texted me for ideas for lunch and that was the inspiration I needed to hop back on here and share a recipe.

Vegan Lunch Ideas

I’m not going to lie, there are days my lunch looks like this:   


But there are other days that I get it right, and then fail to take a photo.

I’m a huge fan of salads for lunch but when I suggested this to my sister, she surprised me by confirming that salads are a no go for her (apparently the leaves get in her files, wtf?).

So I had to come up with something else. I think this recipe has a lovely mediterranean vibe and so is perfect for this summer heat wave we’re having. It’s also one of those meals that is super simple, it will serve for both dinner and then as a cold lunch the next day.

Simple Basil and Tomato Pasta

(Serves four (two for dinner and two for lunch))

  • 300 grams penne pasta
  • 3 cloves of garlic – finely chopped
  • 300 grams cherry tomatoes (use smaller sweeter tomatoes such as cherry or baby plum, not huge great hulking things) – halved
  • 2 good handfuls of fresh basil leaves
  • Salt for seasoning
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • A generous drizzle of Garlic Oil



1. Put the pasta on to boil. Follow whatever method works best for you here, I’ve always followed the principle that you should allow 1 litre of water for every 100 grams of pasta and salt the water well, but I get that tonnes of salt is considered baaaad, so do what works for you. I spend a little extra on pasta to get a good quality thick shell that tastes good a al-dente.

2. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and fry off the garlic on a low heat, you don’t need to brown it off just soften it ever so slightly then add the tomatoes. Continue to cook for no more than two minutes – you want the tomatoes to be warmed but not to have lost any of their structural integrity.

3. Drain the pasta and drizzle with the garlic oil. Add this back into the pan with the garlic and tomatoes for a quick stir, season to your taste and then serve.

4. Put your lunch allocation in your lunch box and leave it to cool before adding your torn basil leaves (otherwise they will be wilted and mushy by the time you come to eat it at lunch tomorrow). Serve the remainder piping hot on the plate and tear the basil over the top.


Super simple, super delicious. Also being as it is, a pasta recipe, this is probably the kind of food you should be steering clear of if you’re making the switch to VB6 for health reasons (white pasta = simple carbs and processed = not soooo good).

Mmmm, I’ve not had this in so long, I think I know what I’m having for lunch today…..


*Before anyone gets over excited about that little comment I’m just going to confirm that I’m being glib: there are a whole series of ethical and spiritual reasons I chose this lifestyle