Food, food culture, food as culture and the cultures that grow our food

Taking Cashew Cheese Seriously This Time

November 4, 2004

In my October 6th entry I report on buying R A W and how it made me nostalgic for the vegetarian classic, Laurel’s Kitchen. I said I was going to take cashew cheese seriously these time and I am a woman of my word. Roxanne Klein’s recipe calls for ‘fermented bean water’ but I just used kim chi (pickled cabbage) juice to sour the nut mash - worked great.

It’s not called cheese because it tastes or feels anything like cheese - but it’s really delicious, delicious enough to eat frequently. It will suffice for comfort food in these grim days.

Cashew Cheese:

1 cup cashews (and almonds) SOAKED FOR 10 hours and drained
some water
something sour (like Kim Chi juice, sauerkraut juice)

Blend until extremely smooth. Place goop in a wet cheese cloth and suspend to drain out the cashew/almond milk. You can drink this, it’s yummy. After 12 hours put the now dry cheese ball in a container in the fridge and let it sit at least 1 day - but preferably 3-4 days. It will start to ferment slowly and pleasantly and become something else entirely.

I experimented with a pumpkin seed cheese and this didn’t pan out as well. The seeds aren’t fatty enough and it’s the emulsion of fat and water that makes the nut cheese recipes creamy enough to call cheese.

debra at 9:28 | | post to


  1. See, actually it looked rather disgusting in the full resolution but when I started reading my mouth started to water. Who knows, maybe I’ll give it a try sometime. Maybe it would even be good for xmas?

    Comment by Kristi — November 4, 2004 @ 18:12

  2. I can’t stop eating the cashew cheese! ACTUALLY - I just finished it an hour ago - so I have to stop eating it. But I’m making more on Sunday. It’s delish - and that is the only way in which it resembles the family of ‘cheese’.

    Comment by debra — November 5, 2004 @ 21:54

  3. Recipe looks great and easy too. Have a question though. If putting the cheese in the fridge, how will it ferment, as putting it in the cold temperature will stop the fermenting process from occuring? Or have I got that wrong?

    Comment by Loretta — June 13, 2011 @ 13:17

  4. Hi Loretta,

    You’re right that it ’shouldn’t’ ferment in the fridge, but it does. Over the course of a week or two. Just like food can ‘go bad’ in the fridge. If you add the kimchi juice, it slowly, slowly, slowly, keeps going - just enough to lose the soul sucking homogenieity that makes us sad. Empirical knowledge is completely trustworthy.

    Good Luck!

    Comment by debra — June 13, 2011 @ 13:21

  5. Hi!

    Am i able to just use Almonds instead of Cashews and still have the same results?

    thank you

    Comment by CaverDude — April 26, 2012 @ 12:41

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