A plant-based take on Boursin–a spreadable garlic and herb cheese spread–made with cashews. Quick and easy to prepare, it is vegan, Paleo, soy-free and yeast-free.
- 1 cup (4 oz/112 g) raw cashews
- 3 and 1/2 tablespoons (52 mL) nondairy milk
- 2 and 1/2 tablespoons (37 mL) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- fine sea salt
- 3 to 4 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (see notes)
- Place the cashews in a mason jar or glass bowl. Add 2 cups (500 mL) boiling water. Let stand for 15 to 20 minutes until very plump. Drain and rinse the cashews.
- In a small food processor or handheld blender (i.e., bullet-style blender), process the cashews, milk, lemon juice, garlic powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
- Stop and scrape the sides and bottom of container multiple times until the mixture is very smooth and creamy-looking (be patient, this will take a good amount of stopping, starting, and scraping–about 3 to 4 minutes).
- Scrape the cheese into a small bowl and stir in the herbs, to taste. Adjust the salt to taste.
- Spoon into a small round or square dish that has been lined with cheesecloth or plastic wrap. Pack in the cheese and firmly enclose with the wrap or cloth. Refrigerate at least 4 hours until cold and firm.
- Remove cheese from form and unmold onto a small plate. Enjoy with vegetables, crackers, bread, and more!
Storage: Store the cheese in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Freezing is not recommended.
Herbs: The amount of herbs will vary depending on the herbs you choose to use. A larger amount of parsely and chives can be used (3 to 4 tablespoons), but more powerful herbs, such as rosemary and thyme, should be added in much smaller portions (1/2 to 1 teaspoon at a time). I like to use 3 tablespoons chopped parsley, 1 teaspoon chopped rosemary and 1/2 teaspoon chopped thyme.
Overnight Soaking: If you prefer, soak the cashews in 2 cups cold water, at room temperature for 8 hours instead of using the quick soak method. Drain and rinse before using. I do not recommend soaking the cashews for longer than 8 hours (they can turn slimy).
Blending Tip: I specify a small food processor or blender because the small volume of cheese is difficult to blend in a regular size food processor or blender. If you are making a large batch of the cheese (e.g., double or triple), a regular size food processor or blender will work.
Fresh Garlic: I like the simplicity of using garlic powder, but fresh garlic can be used, too. I do not recommend using raw garlic; the flavor is too strong and grows stronger as the cheese is stored. Instead, blanch the garlic in boiling water for 1 to 2 minutes or roast the garlic. I recommend 2 to 4 cloves, to taste.
- Category: Appetizer, Cheese
- Method: Blending
- Serving Size: 1/2 ounce (1 generous tablespoon)
- Calories: 40
- Sugar: 0.5 g
- Sodium: 15.9 mg
- Fat: 3 g
- Saturated Fat: 0.5 g
- Carbohydrates: 2.5 g
- Fiber: 0.3 g
- Protein: 1.3 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
Keywords: vegan cheese, cashew cheee, plantbased cheese, nondairy, dairy-free, cashews