Cashew “Ricotta” Cheese (Dairy Free)

Cashew “Ricotta” Cheese (Dairy Free)

I love cheese, I have for my whole life! I NEVER thought I would EVER give it up, NEVER! Unfortunately it turns out that my body just cannot tolerate dairy and now my oldest daughter is having issues as well.  I refuse to give up eating and let it get to me….enter in trying all sorts of dairy free options; from $5.99 a bag for diary free chocolate chips, to almond milk creamer, and even nut cheese…yes, you heard me right.  I saw they sold it at Whole Foods, but I was not wanting to spend the money and not like it, so I thought why not create it at home.  I am going to start adding in to my original recipes ways to make them dairy free and quite frankly from now on I will be altering all of my recipes to be not only gluten free but dairy free as well.

Ok, so this cheese really scared me, I mean who is going to like a cheese made out of cashews? I could not believe how good this was, I quickly made some eggplant rolatini for use to stuff the cheese in and eat with a warm marinara sauce…pure heaven! Even Ella had to jump in and try it and she loved it.  I have been working on the recipe to get it just right to my liking and as we speak I have a gluten and dairy free lasagna cooking using this “cheese”. I cannot wait to see how the girls like it (recipe will come for that soon).

Ingredients

  • 2 cups raw cashews (soak these overnight at least for 20 hours- with water covering them in the fridge)
  • water (for soaking)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tableposon fresh parsley, minced (or use 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley)
  • 10 tablespoons  water
  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Directions

  1. Take the two cups of cashews and soak them overnight- this step is important and cannot be skipped.
  2. Once you are ready to make your cheese, drain and rinse the cashews really well.
  3. Place the nuts, salt, black pepper, garlic powder, parsley, water, lemon juice, and olive oil all in your blender (this works best with a heavy duty one, like the Vitamix– my favorite) turn on and blend for about 30 seconds, I like to use the damper to get it all mixed up.
  4. You may make this ahead of time, it will stay fresh in the refrigerator for a few days

Makes easily 3 cups (this was plenty to make a large lasagna). I have a lot of possible uses for this basic cheese that I am working on.  Give it a try, I know you will like this!

Kristin 

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