Today I bring you a joint project with fellow blogger and food adventurer Gina of So…Let’s Hang Out.

Due to my unfortunate relationship with dairy, I’ve been working to find tasty dairy-free alternatives to my favorite moo juice-filled treats. That brings us to cheese. I love me some cheese. I think cheese is the hardest thing to give up in my efforts to be a more plant-powered lady. So, when I discovered I could make cheese with cashews using a high-powered blender, I did a little treat myself move and ordered a much-coveted Vitamix blender, piled way too many cashews into a bag in the bulk section of the grocery store, and got to work.

I’m pretty sure I terrified Gina (from So…Let’s Hang Out) when I first told her about my new interest in being more plant-powered (that’s my code phrase for my attempt at being a vegan). For about a month there, we were committed to The Friend Diet - where we were texting each other pictures of all the food we ate throughout the day to hold each other accountable to what we put in our bodies. A lot of my pictures involved cheese. We bonded over it. So, when I told her about this new type of vegan cheese, she was dubious to say the least.  But she checked it out and tried it herself!  Be sure to check out her Mediterranean Cashew Cheese Spread Recipe over at So…Let’s Hang out. The post is a hilarious look at our attempt at health, and the recipe looks so yum.

Cashew Cheese Ingredients

2 cups raw cashews (soaked overnight)

1/2 cup water

2 tbsp lemon juice

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

2-4 cloves garlic (minced)

salt and pepper (to taste)

freshly chopped parsley (to taste)

Place the cashews and water in a high-powered blender and blend until creamy smooth (like hummus). That, my friends, is a cashew cheese base for a thicker cheese, similar to a ricotta.

I added in lemon juice, minced garlic, nutritional yeast (to give it a more cheese taste, yum!), salt and pepper, and fresh parsley to give it a pop of flavor. It makes a great dip with gluten-free bagel chips, yessss! I also took advantage of the ricotta texture and used it for a vegetarian lasagna. Brilliance! Next up, I’m thinking about vegan cheesecake.

(adapted from Crazy, Sexy Kitchen)

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