Vegan Cheese: You have to make it.

We have been fermenting cashews to make vegan spreads. They are so good, we’ve set aside a corner of a cupboard to have a constant small batch going. Also, the rejuvelac (the liquid you culture the cashews with) is good to drink.

It’s very easy, mostly involves leaving things to sit in the dark for a couple of days.┬áThe process is really simple.

First, you make the rejuvelac from grains. We’ve been using Quinoa, but the book we are using says that any grain works. After soaking them for a 1/2 a day, you leave them moist until they start sprouting, rinsing them and checking them every dau. Then you put them in water for a couple of days, somewhere not too bright and at least at room temperature, until the liquid turns cloudy and sour. When you’ve seived out the sprouted grains, you have rejuvelac.

You soak the cashews until they are soft (about half a day), and then blend them thoroughly, adding a bunch of rejuvelac. We’ve been experiementing with different amounts, but it seems that the less rejuvelac you add, the firmer the cheese becomes. A good blender is key – getting the cashews as finely ground as possible not only makes the cheese feel better but also increases the uniformity and speed of the aging. Put the cashews back in the not-bright-not-too-cold-space for a couple of days and it’s ready to eat. However, it becomes >much< better after you add nutritional yeast and salt – lots of both.

So, this is pretty awesome as it is, but we’ve tried a couple more involved recipes since that are EVEN BETTER.

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