When we made the
protobatch, we made a cashew vegan cheese as well (two of our kids are allergic to dairy).
We don’t have a lot of experience with cashew cheese; we’ve avoided it since O is allergic to tree nuts, but
testing has shown she isn’t allergic to cashews specifically. We had fun making it, but in the end, she didn’t like it. She didn’t have the heart to tell me, though. More testing, she’s allergic to it. Apparently, the trend level had looked good, so we were introducing it, but that reversed. Probably why she didn’t like it. 🙁
The recipe as we made it:
Ingredients 2 cups raw cashews, soaked 2 hours 1/4 cup filtered water 1 lemon, juiced 1/2 cup nutritional yeast 1 clove fresh garlic, minced 1 tsp sea salt
Directions Pulse in a food processor the cashews, yeast, 1/2 the water, 1/2 lemon juice, the garlic, and sea salt. Gradually add the remaining lemon juice and add salt to taste.
It is more like a cheese spread than a traditional cheese, if you haven’t had cashew cheese before. We mostly served it as a cracker topping.
The initial batch of mozzarella. Can’t go wrong, no aging, and pretty easy.
A simple, easy first-time cheese
Ingredients 1 gallon whole milk, not ultra-pasteurized 1/2 rennet tablet 2 tsp citric acid 1/2 tsp calcium chloride 3/4 tsp fine cheese salt 1/2 c cool distilled water
Directions Dissolve citric acid and calcium chloride into 1/4 c distilled water. Stir and set aside. Dissolve rennet tablet into a separate 1/4 c distilled water. Stir and set aside. Gently heat whole milk in a 6 qt stainless steal pot. At 55°F, add citric acid, calcium chloride solution. At 88°F, remove pot from burner and add rennet solution, stirring in via an up and down motion for 30 seconds. Return milk to heat and bring to 105°F. Remove milk from heat and cover for 20 min. When the curds begin to pull away from the side and the whey is clear, proceed. Scoop out curds with a slotted spoon and place in a 5 qt microwavable bowl. Press curds with your hand or spoon and pour off as much whey as possible. Set aside the whey. Microwave curds on high for 1 min. Drain all excess whey, fold curds adding 3/4 tsp cheese salt. Microwave curds on high for 30 sec. Drain all excess whey and fold curds. Repeat heating, draining, folding until smooth and elastic. Stretch the curds. If they break, reheat. Once the curds stretch like taffy, the cheese is done. Serve warm or place in ice water for 30 min to provide smooth texture.