PALEO & WHOLE30 VEGAN CULTURED CREAM CHEESE
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PALEO & WHOLE30 VEGAN CULTURED CREAM CHEESE
As I’ve overstated in my previous cheese blogs, I am a cheese hound. I say “am” in the present tense because sometimes I just crave it. But in following the Paleo/Whole30 lifestyle more rigidly to completely rid my body of pain associated with a car accident injury, I vowed to give up cheese for a while.
In making fresh vegan cheese, I soon discovered that I absolutely love them! Cashew based vegan cream cheese gives you all the same texture and tanginess that you enjoy from the dairy version.
You also get the added benefit of the rich, animal-free protein of the cashews!
This cream cheese can be used just as you would use any cream cheese, such as on grain-free bagels, served with fruit or served as a savoury dip.
I made enough cream cheese in my last batch that I was able to prepare both a dip and a fruit tart.
To make the Bacon, Basil, and Olive Oil dip, simple place the cream cheese on a plate, sprinkle with Whole30 approved crispy bacon, sprinkle with basil, and drizzle with olive oil (quality stuff!)
Click this link for the Strawberry and Kiwi Cream Cheese tart:
RECIPE NUTRITIONAL VALUE:
This recipe includes raw cashews, which are low in sugar and rich in fiber, heart-healthy fats, and plant protein. They are also a good source of copper, magnesium, and manganese — nutrients important for energy production, brain health, immunity, and bone health. Consuming raw cashews may also help prevent blood disease, helps to protect our eyes, and helps to make our skin glow.
Nutritional yeast is another ingredient. It is naturally low in sodium and calories, and it is fat-free, sugar-free, gluten-free, and vegan! Nutritional yeast also helps to lower bad cholesterol thus protecting the body from free radical damage.
RECIPE TASTE PROFILE
The predominant taste sensation of this cream cheese is tanginess. It’s chemo-sensory sensation is creaminess. So rich and delicious.
DIRTY-BIRDY WINE PARTNER (FOR THOSE MAINTAINING A PALEO OR WHOLE30 LIFESTYLE)
With the predominant taste sensation of this cream cheese being tanginess, choose a wine with equal tanginess. Examples include Pinot Gris, Pinot Grigio, dry Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, or even Vinho Verde.
If you add another taste sensation to the cream cheese then the wine partner will change as well. If you add fruit, then you’ll need a wine with equal to more sweetness. If you add smoked salmon, stay with the same vine, a crisp, dry white. The acidity in a crisp, dry white like Sauvignon Blanc will nicely offset the saltiness in smoked salmon.
Soak cashews over night.
Process in a blender or food processor until creamy. Add yogurt and blend again.
- Prep Time: 10
- Cook Time: 24 FERMENTATION
- Total Time: 30 HOURS
- Yield: 2 cups 1x
- Category: PALEO & WHOLE30
- Method: FERMENTING
- Cuisine: BREAKFAST, LUNCH, BRUNCH, DINNER
- Diet: Gluten Free
2 cups raw cashews soaked overnight in filtered water
2 tbsp plain, unsweetened non-dairy yogurt (see notes)
1/2 tsp sea salt (plus more to taste)
Filtered water as needed to blend
Sterilize all the equipment you intend to use including inside the mixer bowl, spoons, etc. Sterilize the glass container to be used to store the cream cheese. Set aside.
Drain water from soaked cashews. Place cashews in blender or food processor and blend until smooth. It can take some time.
Stop to scrape down the sides as often as needed; you can add water as needed to make smooth. Add the yogurt, pulse more to mix. Transfer mixture to your glass container. Cover. Let sit out at room temperature for 24 hours. (If your house is air-conditioned in the summer, put the glass jar in the oven with the light on to keep it a room temp. When done, add salt.
Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. This recipe makes cultured cashew cream cheese with a texture more like “whipped” dairy cream cheese. For a firmer texture like block cream cheese, press out the liquid using cheesecloth.
I use So Delicious Plain Unsweetened Cultured Coconut Milk as my nondairy yogurt of choice.
I usually don’t wait the 24 hours to finish the cream cheese as it begins to taste more like yogurt than cream cheese. Taste occasionally for your own taste preference.
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