Basil Sundried Tomato Cashew Cheese

Basil Sundried Tomato Cashew Cheese

Thanks to their smooth, spongy texture, cashews can form the basis of cheeses, milks or cream.  A blank canvas with a delicate flavor, cashew cheeses can be enhanced with savory herbs, spices, or extracts. Or, consider sweeter cream cheese or ricotta-style preparations, where chopped dried fruits or a drizzle of maple syrup will make cashew cheese a perfect addition to breakfast or brunch.

The vegan cheese market as a whole has grown considerably in the last few years, with many delicious commercial cashew cheese products available.  I recently sampled several items from Treeline, a nut cheese company based in upstate New York that makes products like a cracked pepper hard cheese, and an herb-garlic french style soft cheese.  They were delicious (pretty packaging, too) and are pleasing dairy and non-dairy lovers alike.

There are so many ways to enjoy cashew cheese. This soft, spreadable style is perfect on crackers or sandwiches, as a dip for vegetables, or a topping for pizzas and salads. Or, it can be melted into a sauce when combined with nut milk.

To make your own cashew cheese, the raw cashews need to be soaked for 6 hours along with a pinch of salt prior to using. This makes them easier to digest, and some say it helps improve their taste.

Basil Sundried Tomato Cashew Cheese
Author: 
Recipe type: Dips & Spreads
 
Ingredients
  • 1½ c raw cashews, presoaked in water and pinch of salt for 6 hours, or overnight
  • ½ t garlic powder
  • 1 T olive oil
  • ¼ c sundried tomatoes, chopped
  • ¼ c nutritional yeast
  • ½ t salt
  • ½ t lemon juice
  • ½ t tabasco sauce
  • 2 c fresh basil leaves
Instructions
  1. In a food processor, process cashews for 2 minutes, scraping the sides to ensure they’re being evenly broken down.
  2. Add in garlic powder, olive oil, sundered tomatoes, nutritional yeast, salt, tabasco, lemon juice and basil leaves. Process until smooth.
  3. Refrigerate for at least one hour. Serve chilled or at room temperature with crackers or crudités.

 

Comments

  1. Did you use dried sundried tomatoes or oil-packed? Do you think dried could be subbed for oil packed? I might make this later and will credit you on my blog if it turns out well.

    Thanks!

    • That’s a great question. Thank you for asking! I actually used marinated sundried tomatoes in this particular recipe which contain a small amount of oil, but not as much as the oil-packed. I think that the dried and reconstituted version would be great as well. If one were to use oil-packed, the additional tablespoon of olive oil can be omitted. Please let me know how it turns out for you! :)

  2. Lynntofu says:

    I just tried this and it was yummy. I left out the nutritional yeast and used sun-dried tomatoes not in oil. I dipped carrots and cucumbers in it.

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