Chèvre is a French cheese with a semi-soft texture and distinctive, tart ﬂavor.As with classic chèvre, this Vegan Recipe is pleasantly salty and uses acid (vinegar and lemon juice) to coagulate and intensify the cheese. Serve dabbed on crackers, fresh vegetables, or sandwiches. Its creamy tang is also excellent as a substitute for cream cheese.
Makes 2 8-inch cylinders
- 3 cups water, boiling
- 1½ cups raw cashews
- 2 tablespoons agar ﬂakes
- ½ cup plus ½ cup water
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon raw tahini
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1¼ teaspoons sea salt
- Pour boiling water over cashews, and soak for at least an hour, or up to overnight. In a small saucepan oﬀ the heat, combine the agar and ½ cup of the water. Set aside to dissolve while the cashews soak. The agar ﬂakes will enlarge slightly and take on a pale cast.
- Line a shallow container (a 9 by 9-inch or 9 by 13-inch casserole dish is ideal) with plastic wrap, allowing it to hang over the sides slightly. Set aside.
- Place the agar mixture over low heat, stirring occasionally as you put together the cashew mixture. Drain the cashews, rinse, and drain again. In a blender, combine cashews, the remaining ½ cup water, lemon juice, tahini, vinegar, and sea salt.
- Blend until completely smooth, scraping down the sides as necessary. This process should take about 5 minutes while the agar mixture bubbles away.
- Once the cashew mixture is smooth, scrape the agar mixture into the blender with the machine running. Continue blending until the texture is silky. Scrape into the plastic-lined container, smoothing the top.
- Cover loosely and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour. Once fairly solid, divide the Chèvre in half. Using the plastic, shape each section into a cylinder about 2 inches in diameter and 8 inches long.
- Wrap tightly in plastic, and chill until ready to use. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.
- Afer forming the Chèvre into cylinders, roll in a mixture of ¼ cup finely chopped fresh parsley, 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil, and 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme or oregano.
- Add 1 teaspoon dried lavender for a distinctive French ﬂavor. sauces, dressings, and condiments Peppercorn Chèvre After forming the Chèvre into cylinders roll in 2 tablespoons coarsely ground peppercorns.