This spreadable vegan cheese is a genius way to use up the pulp left over from making home made almond milk.
It's taken me a long time to come around to enjoying almond milk, and the number one reason is that I hadn't tried making it myself. Now that I've acquired a taste for it, I don't mind the store bought stuff but to begin with I found it lacking in body and flavour.
Then I tried making my own almond milk from scratch. Trumpets and fanfare! Life changing moment right there. Home made almond milk is SO MUCH NICER than its store bought counterpart. It has the body and creaminess that I'm looking for in a plant based milk, no nasty additives (what is up with the length of the ingredients list on some brands?!) and it really is delicious.
Home made almond milk is also incredibly easy to make, you simply soak a cup of nuts overnight, drain them then blend with four cups of water and strain (preferably using a nut milk bag, or pantyhose in a pinch). That's it. No recipe required. But if you want one, I'd recommend this brilliant Nut Milk 101 by Liberty at Homespun Capers.
I like my almond milk with a pinch of salt and just a touch of maple syrup and vanilla, not so much that it tastes like a sweet milk - but just enough to round out the flavour. I mostly enjoy almond milk on muesli or to drink from a glass (iced coffee, anyone?), so lightly sweetened suits me perfectly. If I was going to use it for savoury cooking I'd simply leave out the flavourings.
Once I realised I actually love almond milk, the next question on my mind was its cost. Really, it's not cheap. In New Zealand all nuts are pretty pricey, and the cost of home made is usually more than the cost of a litre of store bought. Every time I made it, a certain someone in my home would mutter and mumble for days about the cost and why couldn't I just buy it from the supermarket like everyone else. The answer to that problem is making it a two for one deal.
When you're done straining almond milk, you're left with a pile of soft, fine almond pulp.
The first few times I made almond milk I just threw this stuff away (I know! such a waste!). Inspired by this recipe from Dearna at To Her Core, I now make a sort of cheese out of it which is sharp and cheesy tasting, firm but spreadable and lovely on crackers or in a salad.
There's around a cup of pulp left over from making the milk (depends how tightly you pack it), which makes a good amount of cheese to enjoy over the next few days. It's tasty, frugal and makes home made almond milk all the easier to justify.
This recipe is very versatile - add other spices or flavourings to the mix or roll it in seeds, nuts or herbs of your choosing. Leave out the coconut oil if you prefer, I like the firmness it provides once chilled as otherwise this cheese can be very crumbly.
- Pulp left over from making 1 litre of almond milk (about 1 cup)
- 1 clove garlic crushed or finely grated
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 2 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 2 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon mustard powder substitute with mustard from a jar if necessary
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Mix all ingredients together well.
- Roll into a log, or 3-4 balls. I like rolling mine into three balls, as I find one ball is a good portion size.
- Cover and store in the fridge. The cheese will keep for a few days.
Inspired by Homemade Dairy-Free Cheese, Three Ways by To Her Core.