New Recipe: Truffled Cashew Cheese
This is a new recipe for my next cookbook. I am sharing it today as a lead into next week’s post about helping picky eaters enjoy more nuts and seeds.
I make this cheese fairly regularly. Though it can be used as a raw recipe incorporated into other raw dishes, we also use it as a spread for breads and potatoes, a filling for pastas, and also a pizza spread.
Truffled Cashew Cheese
Cashew cheese is a favorite for eating on its own with veggies or crackers, or using in entrees where a dairy-cheese substitution is desired. The addition of truffle oil in this cheese adds a particular sophistication to the flavor of the cheese. However, don’t shy away from making this recipe if you don’t have the truffle oil – see the note for other ideas.
2 1/2 cups soaked raw cashews (see note)
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (see note)
1 small-medium clove garlic
2 – 4 tbsp water (as needed to thin/smooth cheese)
1/2 tsp sea salt
freshly black pepper to taste
1 – 2 tsp truffle oil (see note in directions)
In a food processor, blend all ingredients until smooth, starting with 1 tsp of truffle oil to start, and adding 2- 4 tbsp of water to desired consistency (or more if desired to thin). Stop to scrape down sides of processor as needed, and puree until very smooth and thick. Taste, and add additional truffle oil, ½ – 1 tsp to taste.
Makes about 1½ (generous) cups.
Note: It is important to soak the cashews in advance so they become very soft and moist for pureeing. You will need between 1 ¾ – 2 cups of cashews to yield the 2 ½ cups of soaked. Soak overnight in the fridge if possible, or for 4-6 hours if you haven’t soaked overnight. I’ve also made this cheese with a combination of soaked brazil nuts and cashews, and that’s another delicious variation.
Note: After pureeing this mixture, test and if you’d like a zingier flavor, add another 1-2 tsp of lemon juice.
Note: If you don’t have truffle oil, simply make this cheese without it, and consider adding other flavor enhancers, such as fresh herbs (handful of basil leaves, few teaspoons of thyme leaves, or a couple tablespoons of chives), chipotle hot sauce, smoked paprika, or, if you like the flavor of nutritional yeast, add ½ – 1 tablespoon of nutritional yeast (or more, to taste).
Note: This cheese freezes very well. I typically make a double-batch, and freeze smaller portions that can be thawed for using within 3-4 days.
Recipe © copyright 2009 Dreena Burton