Cashew Ricotta Cheese

On my search for a lasagna option my family would actually love, I came across this post for Cashew Ricotta Cheese.  Turns out it cooked perfectly and even mimicked the taste and texture of the real thing.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 Tbsp each apple cider vinegar & lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 garlic clove
  • dash of onion powder
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  1. Soak the cashews for at least two hours in a bowl of water, covering the cashews about an inch with water
  2. Drain cashews and place all ingredients into a blender or food processor, blend scraping the sides as needed until creamy.  Taste for flavors adding any additional ingredients if needed.
  3. Store in refrigerator in an air tight container for an hour or two (I like to leave it overnight).

*this makes about 2 cups and can keep in the refrigerator for up to a week

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Pasta Sauce

This is a quick(er) alternative to canning sauce (which I’ve done), and much tastier than store bought because you can customize it any way you want. I got the base from here, but added quite a bit to make it my own.

Ingredients:

  • 4 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 4-6 cloves garlic
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 sweet pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 cup each spinach & kale, cooked
  • *any other desired vegetables
  • 1-28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1-28 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 4 tsp dried basil
  • 2-4 Tbsp sugar
  1. Heat olive oil in large saucepan on medium heat. Add onions and saute for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  2. Lower heat to med-low and add peppers and mushroom, continue stirring for another 5 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and stir constantly for 30 seconds, until fragrant. Do not let the garlic burn.
  4. Add all remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
  5. Turn the heat back up to medium and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to low and let sauce simmer for as long as possible, at least 30 minutes.

Faux Velveeta/American Cheese

Motivated by my craving for Seafood Casserole, I had to try and find a suitable version of Velveeta cheese. Thankful for the internet, I was able to find this one that worked great in this dish, and others.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/3 cup Quinoa flour
  • 3 Tbsp Cornstarch
  • 1.5 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1 cup Coconut milk (rice or almond would also work)
  • 1/3 cup Butter substitute (I like Vegan Becel)
  1. Whisk dry ingredients together in a large saucepan. Add water, whisk into a paste
  2. Place pan over medium heat, stirring constantly until sauce thickens (about 2 minutes)
  3. Whisk in coconut milk and stir constantly until sauce thickens and begins to bubble
  4. Remove from heat and whisk butter in mix
  5. Pour into greased muffin tin and freeze until completely solidified
  6. Once solid, take the “pucks” out of the muffin tin and put them in a freezer bag until ready to use. These will work best if taken out an hour or so before use.

Gluten Free Flour Mix

Over the past 3 years I have tried SEVERAL versions of all-purpose flour mixes, most of which have been okay for a recipe or two, and then terrible with others. Through trial and error, I have finally found one mix in The Gluten Free Bible that seems to work in any recipe!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup rice flour (brown or white)
  • 1 cup corn starch
  • 1 cup tapioca starch
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1 cup sorghum flour
  1. Mix all ingredients (I usually whisk thoroughly after each addition) and store in an air-tight container to use in any recipe