- Preparation Time 15 Minutes
- Fridge Setting Time 4-5 hours
- Serves 10-12
Vegan, Gluten-free, Dairy-Free, Lactose-free
I am not a huge fan of hard cheeses as such, I much prefer the creaminess of brie, camembert or mozzarella. I am a fan though of silky melted cheese, give me a slice of pizza and some oozy mozzarella and I am in heaven. Over the last 3 years, I have tried all kinds of vegan cheese. I have a few I love, but nothing compared to my BV (before vegan) days.
I kept searching for the best vegan mozzarella. It never occurred to me to make my own until a few weeks ago. The results being a mozzarella style cheese that is just as good on crackers as it is in a toastie or pizza. It even got the seal of approval of some non-vegans.
It has a mild flavour with a creamy but with a slight chew to it.
There are 3 main ingredients that not everyone has in their vegan store cupboard. They are necessary and if you buy a larger quantity, they will make you a lot of vegan cheeses. Firstly there is refined / deodorised coconut oil Not your usual one as you do not want a coconut flavoured cheese. This is available in most supermarkets or from the likes of Amazon.
The next ingredient I have never used before, which is Kappa Carageenan. This most definitely will be found online on Amazon
This is needed to turn the cheese from a thick creamy texture into a solid block which holds it’s shape.
Next is Tapioca flour. I use this a lot in baking, but I know not everyone has this in their store cupboard. This gives the cheese that wonderful stretchy quality and helps it set.
The rest of the ingredients are more run of the mill and easy to find in any supermarket.
There is no need to soak the cashews for any length of time, but make sure you give them a good rinse under hot water for a few minutes. You need to take away the nutty flavour and make them more neutral tasting. What you want from the cashews is their smooth silky texture once blended.
You will also need a good non-stick pan and a glass or ceramic heat-proof bowl to pour the cheese into.
- 75g cashew nuts
- 36g Deodorised / refined coconut oil
- 30g tapioca flour (not starch)
- 1 1/2 Tbsp Kappa Carrageenan
- 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp of Nutritional Yeast flakes
- 1 1/4 Tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder (optional)
- 335 ml of cold water
- Place the cashews into a sieve and rinse under hot water for a few minutes and let them drain for a few minutes. Grease the bottom of the dish you are using with a tiny bit of oil
- Place all the ingredients into the blender and blitz until it is smooth and creamy. You may need to stop and scrape down the sides of your blender at least once.
- Pour the blended mixture into your pan and place on a medium heat.
- Stir with a wooden spatula continuously, do not leave it unattended or left to stick.
- In around 5 minutes the mixture will begin to thicken and bubble. Pour immediately into the dish/ mould, as the mixture will begin to solidify very quickly. Time is important here, make sure you have your moulding dish ready.
- Leave to cool and then place in the fridge for at least 3 hours. Remove from the dish and wrap some kitchen paper and then clingfilm. Return to the fridge for another hour and then remove the kitchen paper and wrap in fresh cling film and return to the fridge.
This lasts in the fridge for around 5 days. It can also be frozen without a problem. I tend to freeze half as I am the only vegan here.
- For a softer cheese, use just 1 tbsp of carrageenan. This would be a good texture for mozzarella balls.
- You could replace the carrageenan with agar powder. You would need to double the amount, so 3 tbsp in this recipe. Although in my opinion, the result will not be as firm and will not melt as well.
- Instead of using the cold water method. You could use boiling water. You would not need to pour it into a pan then. Add the boiling water last and then blitz until silky smooth and just pour straight into your mould. Quickness still applies as it really starts to set so fast. Take care when pouring the boiling water into your blender and also when you go to open it.
I hope you like this cheese as much as I do. It feels like such an achievement once produced.
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If you make this, don’t forget to tag me on twitter as @veganalchemist1 or my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/thegfveganalchemist I love seeing your versions of the recipes. I would love to hear your comments too.