Urban Crusing

Awesome CHEESE

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Absolutely fantastic! I never thought that probiotics can substitute for cheese culture so well! We did this today too ( we are having a "sunday heaven" for new recipes, and although it needs to be in the fridge for 24 hours ( and it is, but I really had to fight the kids), we tried it while making and it is fabulous! Kids are licking the bowl and forks.


Garlic & Dill Cheeze
1 cup Cashew Cheeze (See recipe below)
1 generous teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced chives
1 teaspoon nutritional yeast flakes
1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
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Finely ground almonds, dried dill and garlic powder for the crust


Combine Cashew Cheeze, chives, garlic, nutritional yeast, lemon juice and salt in a bowl. Stir until well mixed. Add fresh herbs and stir until well distributed. Taste and adjust salt, if desired.

Shape the Cheeze mixture into a round or press firmly into a small container or bowl lined with plastic film. Sprinkle mixture of ground almonds, dried dill and garlic powder on top. Allow to chill for at least 12 hours or until it firms up.

When firm, de-mold, turn over and transfer onto a plate. Sprinkle more dried herbs on top and sides.

Store in fridge in airtight container for up to 3 or 4 days.



Basic Cashew Cheeze
3 cups cashews, soaked 12-14 hours
3 capsules probiotics
2/3 cup fresh rejuvelac (see instructions in this post)

In high speed blender, blend the soaked cashews with probiotics and rejuvelac until smooth.

Line a sieve with a double thickness of cheesecloth and place over a bowl. Transfer the mixture to the sieve, drape the cheesecloth over the top, cover with a towel and leave in a warm place to ripen for 14-16 hours.

Season according to one of the following recipes (or come up with your own variation!)

Alternatively, shape the mixture into a round, place in a covered container, and refrigerate for at least 24 hours, or until it firms up.

Notes:
~ You could sub the probiotics with some miso; the idea is to give the culture a kick start.

~ If you don't have rejuvelac, fresh water would also work.

~ It is key to use as little liquid as possible for best results in terms of texture.

~ You may want to adjust the culturing time, depending on how 'strong' you like your cheeze.


Rejuvelac Demystified
My good friend and accomplished raw chef Heathy was telling me the other day how she felt intimidated by that whole rejuvelac thing. I know where she's coming from as I was in her shoes only a few weeks ago. However, there's really not much to it. Put simply, rejuvelac is obtained by soaking sprouted grains in fresh water for a couple of days, so don't let the length of these next instructions turn you off.

To Make Rejuvelac
I'm sure there are many different ways to make rejuvelac, but here's the basic technique as described on the Sproutpeople's site.

Ingredients
2 Cups Rye
10 Cups Water
2 Qt. Jar

Preparation
1. Soak 2 cups of Rye in your 2 quart jar. Cover with 1 quart or more of cool (60-70 °) water. Stir seeds up to assure even water contact. Soak for 8 - 12 hours.

2. Pour off water.

3. Rinse (fill Jar 3/4 full with water), twirl vigorously, pour water out, and repeat - if necessary - until water runs clear). Use cool (60-70°) water.

4. Drain thoroughly by shaking your Jar - you want as little water as possible to remain in your Jar between Rinses. Set your Jar in a low-light, room temperature (70° is best) location.

4. Rinse and Drain (repeat steps 3 + 4) again 8 - 12 hours later.

5. 8 - 12 hours later your seeds will have the beginnings of little tails (sprouts). Add 6 cups of water (spring, purified or tap - your choice) to the sprouts and place the jar in the usual low-light, room temperature (70° is best) location for 2 days.

6. Pour liquid - this is your Rejuvelac - into a glass and drink some! Refrigerate the remainder until ready to drink or use in a recipe.

7. You may make more Rejuvelac by repeating step 3 and then adding 1 quart of water. Place your Jar in the usual location and culture your Rejuvelac for 1 day - then follow step 6 again.

Your sprouts are now pretty much spent, so toss ‘em to the critters (squirrels, rabbits, birds and many other outdoor creatures love sprouts) or compost them - or - throw ‘em in the garbage - it’s nice to add a little organic matter to a landfill though, don’t you think?

Notes:
~ You can make rejuvelac out of other grains too, but wheat and rye are the most commonly used. My last batch was made with sprouted quinoa, and it turned out great.

~ If you only want rejuvelac in order to make cheese, you might want to cut the recipe way down. I'm experimenting with freezing the left-over rejuvelac for future usage. Hopefully it will still work! *fingers crossed*


Alright! Now this is the part where it gets really fun and interesting!

You get to come up with whatever flavors you want: chive, sun dried olives and fresh basil, rosemary and thyme, or jalapeño pepper. Mmmmmmm... So many variations to play with! For my part, I opted for the following...

Cashew Cheeze au Poivre
Adapted from a recipe by Chad Sarno

1 cup Cashew Cheeze
1 tbs nutritional yeast, small flake
1/4 tbs onion powder
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp sea salt
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Coarsely crushed peppercorns for the crust


Place first 5 ingredients in a bowl and mix well with a spoon.

Shape the Cheeze mixture into a round or press firmly into a small container or bowl lined with plastic film.

While still in the pan, sprinkle the crushed peppercorns on top. Allow to chill for at least 12 hours or until it firms up.

When firm, demold, turn over and transfer onto a plate. Sprinkle more peppercorns on top and sides.

Store in fridge in airtight container for up to 3 or 4 days.


Herb Cheeze
Adapted from a recipe in Charlie Trotter's Raw

1 cup Cashew Cheeze
1 tsp minced green onion
1/4 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp nutritional yeast, large flakes
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp chopped fresh basil (or 1/2 tsp dried)
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme (or 1/2 tsp dried)
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Dried basil and thyme for the crust


Combine Cashew Cheeze, green onion, lemon juice, nutritional yeast and salt in a bowl, and stir until well mixed. Add fresh or dried herbs and stir until well distributed. Taste and adjust salt, if desired.

Shape the Cheeze mixture into a round or press firmly into a small container or bowl lined with plastic film. Sprinkle
dried herbs on top. Allow to chill for at least 12 hours or
until it firms up.

When firm, de-mold, turn over and transfer onto a plate. Sprinkle more dried herbs on top and sides.

Store in fridge in airtight container for up to 3 or 4 days.



Garlic Paprika Cheeze
1 cup Cashew Cheese
1/4 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp nutritional yeast, large flake
1/4 tsp onion powder
3/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
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Paprika for the crust


Combine first 6 ingredients in a bowl and stir until well mixed. Taste and adjust salt, if desired.

Shape the Garlic Paprika Cheeze mixture into a round or press firmly into a small container or bowl lined with plastic film. Sprinkle paprika on top. Allow to chill for at least 12 hours or until it firms up.

When firm, de-mold, turn over and transfer onto a plate. Sprinkle more paprika on top and sides.

Store in fridge in airtight container for up to 3 or 4 days.


Oh, and have I mentioned that nut cheeze even freezes well?