Herbed Macadamia Nut Cheese
2 cups macadamia nuts, soaked overnight
2T nutritional yeast
1 T onion powder
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup fresh chives or tarragon
Drain and add nuts to a high-speed blender, scraping down the sides as needed.
Scrape the mixture into a strainer lined with a piece of cheesecloth. Draw the strings of the bag and twist to secure it. Place a small plate over the cheese and press to flatten it out a bit. Next place a heavy weight, such as a bowl of dried beans or a large can, onto the plate. The weight will help to press out any excess water, which will ultimately determine the firmness of the cheese. Cover everything with a clean cloth or breathable piece of mesh.
Let culture at room temperature for at least 12 hours or up to 24 hours for a stronger result. When ready, remove from the cheesecloth. Pressing the cheese, rather then hanging it, makes it drier and therefore easier to shape and mold.
Remove from cheese cloth and place in bowl. Add the remaining spices and mix thoroughly.
To shape the cheese, scoop onto a piece of parchment paper. Then using your hands, mold the cheese into a log-like shape. Fold the sheet over and roll the cheese to form a nice roll. Cut the cheese in half and set one half aside.
Next, roll the cheese in your choice of ingredients, such as fresh herbs or peppercorns Then simply roll and gently press the cheese into the ingredients used. Carefully, press the ends of the cheese onto the ingredients as well. Carefully roll the cheese one last time, to ensure it is evenly shaped.
Serve these cheeses as part of an appetizer or salad or simply serve as part of a non–dairy cheese platter.
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