Food Blog Vegan MoFo

#VeganMoFo Day 6: I’m Nuts for Vegan Cheese


Yeah. OK. So finally, there’s vegan cheese that doesn’t gross me out, and it’s made out of nuts. But it’s also super expensive, so I usually just make some vegan cheese. Cashew ricotta is quick and easy for a creamy filling/topping; nutty nooch is just nuts/seeds of my choice–usually almonds or walnuts and hemp seeds–whizzed in the spice grinder with nutritional yeast for a parmesan sub. But the best ones are cultured.

I’ve made the herbaceous cultured cashew spread from Vegan Eats World a whole bunch of times, and it’s a dang winner. Well, I do not bother with sauteeing any garlic or shallots; I just add raw garlic (BOOM) and lemon zest along with the herbs. It is awesome on bread. It is excellent as pasta sauce. It’s not bad in a salad dressing.

But really, a simple presentation is the best one. Something carby. A little tomato. Delicious.

Food Blog None Vegan MoFo

Pan-fried stuffed squash blossoms, kale-cabbage salad, roasted poblano chile and tomato salsa, and black beans and rice

It’s late summer, and the farmers’ market is full of inspiration. There’s still berries and corn and tomatoes, but also brussels sprouts and apples and pomegranates. Some serious best-of-both-worlds stuff.

Anyway, among the things I picked up today were fresh dried black beans, dark red poblano peppers, San Marzano plum tomatoes, and squash blossoms. Some of these are not exactly weeknight-quick ingredients, so I wanted to use them today.

First I set the beans a-soaking, along with a couple handsful of cashews to make nut cheese (with a bit of white miso, one chopped scallion, nutritional yeast, and water, spun in the food processor until smooth and creamy). After a couple hours, the beans had doubled in size, so I cooked them until tender, then added a chopped onion, salt, and a little ground coriander and kept simmering until everything else was ready to eat.

Then I roasted the salsa veggies.

Once brown and beautiful, I threw it in the blender with a handful of toasted pumpkin seeds, cilantro, and a splash of white wine vinegar.

Next, it’s stuffed squash blossom time. Definitely a Sunday thing, way too much work for any other day. But worth it. I rinsed the blossoms and mixed up some flour, salt, and pepper to dredge them in. Scored the blossoms, pried them open, spooned in some cashew cheese, closed it back up, got some flour mixture on the outside of the blossom, and threw it in a hot oiled cast iron pan for a few minutes on each side.

Last, I shredded half a bunch of curly green kale and a chunk of red cabbage and green cabbage, massaged it a bit to break down the kale, and tossed it with a pinch of salt and a drizzle of white wine vinegar and olive oil.

To serve, I put the beans on the rice, the blossoms on a bed of kale, and the salsa on top of everything. Really, it all gets mixed around anyway.