• Katie Traill

Easy Fermented Cashew Cheese Recipe

A finished herb cheese, with a nice coating of yeast on top

Cashew cheese is a vegan’s dream. I never really took to ‘fake’ cheeses until I found commercial nut cheeses which are nearly always fermented, and I got hooked! They’re rich and fatty due to the nut content, creamy, and quite healthy with presence of live organisms and no animal products. BUT they’re a treat in our house as they cost a little more and come in glass jars, so I’ve invented my own and I love it!

You can make non-dairy cheese from many things – nuts, acorns, seeds – but I use cashews or almonds as it’s using a by-product of home homemade nut mylk. Cashew gives a creamier, more spreadable cheese which is great to have on toast, sandwiches, pizza, cheese boards and as a dip.

You’ll need:

- About ½ a cup of cashew nut mylk pulp (or soak ½ cup cashews overnight and blitz with a Tbsp water in the morning in a good small food processor)

- Tsp live culture from a lactoferment – I use sauerkraut juice or kvass (storebought is fine, as long as it contains live cultures)

- 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast

- ½ tsp fine salt

- Flavour options; ¼ tsp dried herbs; ¼ tsp garlic powder, ¼ tsp smoked paprika; 1/8 tsp turmeric; ½ tsp mustard; ¼ tsp cracked pepper; or a combination!

- A mug and cheese cloth (muslin) with elastic band

Start by mixing all ingredients together in a mug. Taste and adjust flavouring as desired. Cover with cheese cloth and elastic band, and sit at room temperature out of direct sunlight for 24hrs.

The next day, your cheese should be quite sour and a little bubbly. Mix well and taste – if you’d like to develop more sourness and flavour, leave for another few hours. If it tastes good, store in the fridge. You can store it as is, or if you prefer, spoon onto a double layer of cheese cloth, tie, suspend over a bowl and leave in the fridge overnight to drain (see images below) for a firmer cheese. Use the drained liquid in sauce and store the cheese in an airtight container for around one week.

A short ferment of about 24hrs

In warmer temps, or over a longer period, your cheese can become very active!

Spoon cheese into the centre of a muslin square, tie, and suspend overnight in the fridge

Strained cheese is a little firmer. Use the strained juice as a sauce.

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- Katie