The Basics: Vegan Nut Cheese Tutorial

February 25, 2013 § 3 Comments

Say Cheese! Kind of....

Vegan Almond Cheese (vegan, gluten free, raw if blanching almonds is considered so?)
2 cups raw whole almonds, soaked in water overnight
1 cup water
1 tsp (dairy-free if vegan) probiotic powder (if using capsules, break open – I used 4 or 5)
1 tsp salt
2 heaped tbsp nutritional yeast

extras: pink peppercorns, dried dill, garlic powder, sea salt

Drain soaked almonds, then plunge into a pot of boiling water for a few seconds. Drain again and when cool enough pop the skins off (hence why I prefer time saving macadamias, but they’re too expensive to buy shelled, and take waaaay too long to shell individually at home).
Put blanched almonds in Vitamix or similar with water and probiotics and blend until smooth.
Line a sieve with cheesecloth and sit it over a bowl. Pour mixture onto cloth, then cover with more cloth and weigh down with some heavy jars (fill jars with water for extra weight). This is to squeeze the excess moisture out.
Leave on benchtop for 12-24 hours to culture. When it starts smelling like soiled baby nappies you’re ready to add the flavours! Test for your preferred level of cultured-ness though (I like mine tangy).
Pop firmed up cheese into a bowl, and add salt and nutritional yeast and mix well with a fork to combine. This is your basic ‘feta’. You can either serve like this or mould some into rounds and cover in crushed peppercorns and salt, or add dill and garlic powder, then pop in dehydrator for about 6 hours each side until it forms a rind.
Serve with crackers! In a salad! Or straight from the fridge like I do….
Will keep in fridge for about a week.

There are plenty of variations of this online if you google raw vegan cheese – can use cashews or macadamias, I’m even looking into walnut blue cheese. Plus you can use miso or rejuvelac as the kick starter for the fermentation process too. Have some fun with it!

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Snack Attack: Dried Apple Muesli Chews

February 15, 2013 § Leave a comment

I’m always making little things I can snack on during the day – with these I also managed to sneak in a little superfood powder.
You could bake these on a low heat instead of dehydrating I’m sure, have some fun experimenting.

dried apple muesli chews
Dried Apple Muesli Chews (vegan, gluten free)
1 cup dried apple pieces
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
4 Trade Aid medjoul dates
1 tsp apple pie spice (or mix together a little ground cinnamon, ginger and cloves)
1/2 tsp spirulina powder (optional)
1 tsp greens powder (optional)
1 tsp maple syrup
Pinch salt

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend until desired consistency. Press flat on a dehydrator tray and dehydrate for 5-6 hours. Slice into pieces and store in airtight container.

Miss Popularity

February 6, 2013 § 4 Comments

Probably my most popular creation to date, this ginger crunch is also one of the easiest (although to be honest, if it’s not easy I probably won’t have invented it).

Inspired by my sister Ruth (all her idea – she also took the fab pic) I started off by making coconut ice – also delicious – which then morphed into this.

ginge1-sml

Ruthie’s Ginger Crunch (raw, vegan, gluten free)

Base
1/4C Brazil nuts*
1/2C cashews*
1/2C dates
Pinch salt

*You could probably use whatever nuts you have on hand for this – almonds would be good also I reckon

Topping
3C desiccated coconut
2-4cm knob ginger, grated
2t dry ground ginger
3T maple syrup

Process the nuts in a food processor until crumby, then add dates and salt and process until a soft dough is formed. Press into bottom of a dish. In high speed blender or food processor, make coconut butter by whizzing the coconut until it forms a thick liquid (if using a food processor make sure to give it breaks so it doesn’t overheat – blog with pics here about it here: http://fridgescrapings.com/2012/10/27/why-buy-when-you-can-make-plus-worthy-investments/). Add gingers and maple syrup – add more fresh ginger if you prefer a stronger flavour and whizz until combined. Pour onto base and pop in fridge to set. Cut and serve.

Snack Attack: Superfood Bars

February 4, 2013 § Leave a comment

When All Good Bananas dried bananas and Trade Aid NZ Palestinian medjoul dates met and fell in love with a bunch of superfoods, this is what they made (btw this recipe is flexible, feel free to experiment depending on what’s in your pantry):
photo(3)
Superfood Banana Vanilla Muesli Bars (vegan, gluten free)
3 packets All Good Bananas dried bananas
4 Trade Aid dates
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/3 cup quinoa flakes (would anyone be keen for us to stock this? I will if so)
1/3 cup desiccated coconut
1 Tbsp Garden of Life vanilla protein powder
1/2 tsp spirulina
1 Tbsp lucuma
1 Tbsp hemp protein powder

Soak bananas and dates in water for 10 minutes, drain, then process until it makes a rough paste. Add the rest of the ingredients and process until well blended. It should be firm, not too sticky or crumbly. Press into a tin and refrigerate, then cut when cold.

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