Anyway, when I gave up cheese in 2011, it included vegan cheeses too because they are usually soy based and super processed. I could have easily fell into a vegan cheese binge as well! I remember when I first started counting calories and I had to measure out one square inch of cheese- and that was 100 calories. ARE YOU KIDDING ME! That was merely the prelude to a snack. That was something you pop in your mouth just while you are cutting a big portion for some cheese and crackers. I am the type who would eat those mini “Babybel” cheeses like they were going out of style- or those soft cheese spreads in the round packets that comes in triangles- “The Laughing Cow.” The cow was laughing at me for sure wondering why humans drink and eat another species’ milk (and far past infancy)… and watched me as I got fatter and fatter! Easily, I would eat the entire pack in one sitting. I love cheese- no one loved it more than me- I don’t care what anyone thinks on that note! I felt my body shake when I would walk into those gourmet cheese sections in the supermarket like they have at Fairway- Ok I’ll have one of everything! lol
Cheese had to go! As the authors from Skinny Bitch put it: “CHEESE=FAT!” Plain and simple! Not to mention- I want NOTHING TO DO WITH THE DAIRY INDUSTRY and the best marketing campaign of all times- GOT MILK?
How about GOT ALLERGIES? GOT DISEASE? GOT SKIN PROBLEMS? GOT DIARRHEA? lol I could go on and on but you get it!
I guess I am one of those slightly annoying vegans that always has to ask
IS IT VEGAN? Carry that up a notch and you will find me in a RAW FOOD RESTAURANT asking ARE YOU SURE THAT’S NOT REAL CHEESE OR VEGAN CHEESE? ARE YOU SURE THAT’S JUST NUTS? Insane!
|almond nut cheese
Nut cheeses are for real and they are delicious and you can’t even tell the difference from certain soft cheeses like ricotta!
This all being said, you can see how a whole new world has opened up for me and I can finally eat cheese again!
HOW TO MAKE NUT (or seed) CHEESE
(1) Soak the nuts as we did for almond milk 2 days ago. Choose 2 cups of the nut/s or seed of your choice and soak them with 4 cups of fresh filtered water. Let it soak for 4 to 12 hours. ( I generally do a minimum of 8 hours- the equivalent of a good nights sleep)
(2) Drain and rinse the nuts or seeds
(3) Place the nuts or seeds in a power blender (like a Vitamix) with fresh water filled to half the level of nuts. (You may need more water-watch and see)
(4) Add one teaspoon of white miso paste. If you don’t have miso in your refrigerator- think again! There is so much you can prepare with miso- and it’s a fermented food- healthy!
(5) PULSE chop the mixture until the nuts or seeds are pulverized- do not blend it smooth!
(6) The texture should be like cottage cheese (see picture to the right)- stop here and transfer to a mason jar; cover it with cheesecloth or a mesh sprouting screen.Make sure there is enough space left in the jar for it to expand and grow.
(7) Let this sit and FERMENT for 6-12 hours (no longer than 12 hours or it could spoil)
(8) When this is ready you will notice the cheese beginning to separate with the cheese on top (it’s ok if it is slightly darker on top from oxidation) and the whey on the bottom. Just when you think it’s finished- you have to milk the whey lol. You need a milk bag: add the cheese and squeeze out the whey gently. The cheese is then good to go and the whey can be used for other things.
* As a vegan, one of the most difficult things to eliminate because it shows up unsuspectedly in many products like protein powders and drinks is WHEY! I always thought of whey as healthy and I guess it is but the nice thing learned here is that WHEY does not have to mean dairy- I can make and use WHEY now derived from nuts– super cool!
** I used almonds this time and made almond nut cheese- macadamia pine nut cheese is next- yum!
Beitchman, Celine, (2012), Living and Raw Food Intensive, Gourmet Institute, New York, NY
Disclaimer: The information given here is for educational purposes only. You should not use this to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified health care provider.