Saturday, September 4, 2010

Just in Time for Your Labor Day Party: Cashew Cheese Recipe

From Brianne:

*      2/3 cup cashews (raw is best, roasted is still great, and try flavored cashews too)
*      1/4-1/2 cup water (add this slowly and increase the amount if needed...if you add too much just put in more cashews)
*      1/4 cup red bell pepper (raw or roasted, you can use green pepper in a pinch)
*      1/4 small red onion (or more, you can use any kind of onion really)
*      1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
*      2 garlic cloves (or more!)
*      3 tbsp lemon juice
*      2 tbsp Bragg's Liquid Aminos (on the health food isle everywhere, or use soy sauce)
*      1 tbsp sesame oil (or any oil on hand)
*      1 tsp sea salt (optional) if the cashews are unsalted
Put everything in a food processor and blend it until it's creamy. If it's too thick, add more water. If it's too watery, add more cashews. It should have a Cream of Wheat-like consistency, or just a bit thicker. It will also thicken with refrigeration.  
For a pizza, spread it thinly over pizza sauce (it's very rich, so a little bit goes a long way), top it off with your favorite vegetables, and pop it in the oven. If the cashew cheese becomes golden-brown more than a few minutes before the pizza crust is done, cover the top of the pizza with foil.  
This recipe is plenty for a medium-sized pizza. I like making larger batches and keeping leftovers in the fridge.
Cashew cheese is also great in quesadillas, nachos, toasted sandwiches, or just about any other dish that calls for cheese.  This recipe is flexible and adaptable.  If you're missing an ingredient, substitute!  Different consistencies make it good for different uses (thinner for nachos, thicker for spreads...)