Vegan Cheese-y Delights
Unless you were raised by macrobiotic hippies, you’ve had it. I’ve had it. And there’s no shame in saying it— we’ve all had macaroni and cheese out of the box. My kids would plead with me to buy it, and I was thrilled when the vegan stuff came on the market. Maybe you don’t crave it anymore, but it sure is convenient to have some on hand for the kids or the babysitter. But there’s no need to buy it, because you can make the instant cheese sauce mix yourself in just a few minutes! It makes enough to coat the equivalent of 5 store-bought boxes instant macaroni and cheese.Reprinted by permission from The Homemade Vegan Pantry* by Miyoko Schinner, © 2015. Photographs by Eva Kolenko, © 2015 Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC. more→
I had almost forgotten the joy that feta cheese can add to dishes. For example, the wonderful Greek spinach pie, spanakopita—I had basically given up on this entirely. I’d made and had many vegan versions of it, but without the briny flavor of feta, the flavors just fell flat. After much knocking around in my noggin, I came up with the perfect vegan substitute.
Salty and briny, this feta works beautifully crumbled over salads or slightly melted in all of the traditional dishes. Best of all, stored in brine, it keeps for weeks, getting stronger in flavor and more delicious as time goes by (in fact, it vastly improves after a month, so make this weeks ahead of time if you can). Reprinted by permission from The Homemade Vegan Pantry** by Miyoko Schinner, © 2015. Photographs by Eva Kolenko, © 2015 Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC. more→
Diana, blogger at Veggie Next Door, and one of my recipe testers, warns that this might not be the best snack for a party setting since one is guaranteed to have garlic-breath, but I couldn’t resist trying to make a favorite pre-vegan appetizer of mine — Boursin® cheese. Recipe and photo by Ann Oliverio, from Crave, Eat, Heal: Plant-Based Whole Food Recipes to Satisfy Every Appetite* reprinted with permission © 2015 Front Table Books. more→
There’s no dairy in these vegan cheeses, but even your dairy-eating friends will be amazed by these delights! Vegan cheese seems impossible, but some ingredients that regularly appear in vegan food give a cheesy taste to dishes. One of my favorites is nutritional yeast. It tastes good and it’s good for you. Cashews, which are delicious just plain by the handful, create a magical texture that is reminiscent of goat cheese. Make sure to scroll to the end to see each one of these 8 vegan cheeses, all of which will knock your socks off!
You can make this vegan cheese-y appetizer as a spread in no time, or let it set up into slices. I like it both ways and hope that you will, too. This is good with sliced fresh baguette, or serve it with whole-grain or gluten-free crackers or crispbreads. It’s also quite nice served with chunks of red bell pepper and peeled celery cut into short sections. Grapes served in small bunches on the side add a nice flavor balance. Recipe adapted from Vegan Holiday Kitchen by Nava Atlas. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky. more→
Here’s something a little creamy, a little sweet, and easy to pair with nearly anything. Behold, shockingly simple, pretty, sumptuous sweet vegan ricotta. This spread pairs beautifully when slathered on crackers or toast, crowns fruit in a gorgeous way, adds oomph to baking recipes, and is a creamy, dreamy topping for oatmeal and granola. I like mine nestled between french toast and marmalade. more→
This cashew-based dairy-free vegan cheese-y sauce is quick,easy, and rich-tasting. Make your own vegan cheese, yogurt, mayo and margarine! Cheaper and much tastier than store-bought, this e-book brings you the best 12 recipes for dairy alternatives from The Recipe Renovator blog. Complete with an ingredient list, quick recipes, and a more complex artisan vegan cheese, this will get you started making your own cheese and dairy substitutes today. Whether you are a vegan for ethical reasons, have gone plant-based for health reasons, are lactose-intolerant, or just want to eat fewer animal products, this book will give you everything you need to create your own “dairy case” at home. Recipe and photo from Twelve Terrific Dairy Substitutes: Vegan and Gluten-Free by Stephanie Weaver, © 2013. Used with permission. more→
Some vegetarians find it difficult to give up cheese even though some know it’s not the best food to consume. Cheese is very high in calories and fat. To that, add sodium and cholesterol. Cheese may taste good, but like all animal products, there is no reason to eat it when you have healthy alternatives. Basic raw cheeses may contain nuts, probiotics, or rejuvelac for curing, lemon, salt, nutritional yeast, and some Irish moss for thickening. You can add a variety of herbs to enhance the flavor. Recipe and photo contributed by Mimi Kirk, from Live Raw: Raw Food Recipes for Good Health and Timeless Beauty (Skyhorse Publishing, 2011). Photo by Mike Mendell.