Cheese, glorious cheese! Who doesn’t love cheese? One of the things we missed when we “went vegan” was cheese. Luckily we were able to find “Angel Food”, a vegan cheese readily available in the supermarket. However, Angel Food costs a fair bit and so it is used very sparingly in our house. It is great to have a little Angel Food cheese grated over a pasta or pizza. Yum!
Now luckily I was able to find a super easy recipe for vegan cheese that doesn’t cost the Earth, and can be rustled up in 15 mins from start to finish. And the taste? Well, I have had lots of good feedback from friends and visitors alike, so I thought it would be a good share. The recipe originally comes from a NZ Vegetarian Society Facebook post, so please note, this is not my own original recipe, but it is sooo good, it just begs sharing.
Vegan Cheese Recipe
- 1/3 cup cashew nuts (best soaked for 1 hour- optional)
- 150ml water
- 4 TBspn cornstarch
- 3 TBspn nutritional yeast
- 2 TBspn lemon juice
- 1 TBspn olive oil
- 3/4 tspn salt
- 1/3 tspn garlic powder (I grind garlic granules in a mortar and pestle)
Blend all the ingredients in a blender till smooth. Pour into a pan and heat up till it thickens into a thick paste and pulls away from the pan. Stir constantly. Then transfer it into a mould to take shape. Refrigerate for 1 hour until you turn it out onto a plate. Roll it gently in a Mediterranean herb mix.
No animals are harmed during the making of this vegan cheese. Did you know that cheese produced from dairy uses rennet to seperate the liquids in milk, changing it into solids and whey. Rennet is actually enzymes taken from the lining of the stomach of calves to curdle the casein in the milk. Not many people know that fact. It is possible however, to eat vegetarian cheese, which is made from a plant based “rennet”.
This vegan cheese can be sliced if cooked long enough. I have found if cooked a little less then it is best scooped up with a teaspoon, like a smooth cottage cheese.
If you’d like your cheese a bit more yellowish like cheddar, simply add a little turmeric to the blender. One can play around with the herbs too, try parsley, rubbed thyme, dried basil or even chives to coat the exterior. Try it with crackers or on crusty bread. It’s been 2 years since we have had dairy cheese, but I swear this tastes just like cheese, only much, much tastier. And without the cholesterol. You don’t have to be a vegan to enjoy this little delicacy. It won’t break the bank, and it’s definitely healthier for you!
Try cheese-making as a new hobby and impress your family and friends! Definitely worth giving it a shot! You may never go back to dairy-based cheese ever again! So go ahead, say “Cheese” and smile!
(And thanks to NZ Vegetarian Society for the delicious recipe!)