When I bought my first bag of hemp seeds ($17 per 250g at Wholefoods), I was so excited yet unsure what to make. A lot of them have gone into our morning smoothies. I didn't find many recipes to inspire me. (When I buy a new ingredient I often curse myself for not having the foresight to bookmark recipes I have seen using it.) Searching the web can be so frustrating! However, one result was most fortuitous. I found Nava Atlas's Chickpea and Hemp Seed Cheeze.
cheddar style vegan cheeze a few months back and loved it. So much better than buying expensive over-processed vegan cheeze from the shops. It sliced and diced and grated. Not exactly the same as dairy cheese but close enough for jazz. So I was keen to try other recipes.
I made this before we went swimming one morning. Sylvia loved helping out. As I only needed a cup of chickpeas I left the rest in the colander, intending to put them in the fridge for later. Sylvia ate them up. I love a recipe where I don't mind her nibbling on the ingredients! This cheeze is nut free (if you choose to leave out the almond butter or use tahini). It is full of good stuff without being too heavy. I would even claim it is reasonably cheap to make if hemp seeds weren't so expensive.
I've been enjoying this cheeze in slices on dry biscuits (crackers), in burgers and on pasta. It is tasty and slices well. Like the previous cheese, the texture reminds me of that processed German sausage that I had in many sandwiches with tomato sauce when I was a kid. Yet don't be put off by this. It is tasty and a lighter alternative to cheese.
I am sending this to Ricki for her Wellness Weekends event that features amazing healthy vegan food each week.
Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
One year ago: Vegan pastry and tofu pies experiments
Two years ago: Quicklinks from my archives
Three years ago: Chocolate cookies, bbq and mum’s sponge
Four years ago: Broccoli Soup from AWW
Chickpea and hemp seed cheeze
Adapted from Nava Atlas
Makes about 500g (2-3 blocks)
1 cup tinned, drained and rinsed chickpeas
1 1/2 cups soy milk, divided
1/4 cup hemp seeds
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/4 cup vegan mayonnaise (see notes)
1 teaspoon mild english mustard
2 tablespoons lemon juice, or to taste
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp liquid smoke
1 tablespoon almond butter (or tahini), optional
1 and 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/2 tsp turmeric
3 tbsp agar powder
Set aside half the milk and the agar powder.
Place the remaining ingredients in a blender.
- I forgot to set aside some milk so I scooped out some before I blended my mixture. I tried to cook the agar and milk mixture in the microwave for about 1 1/2 minutes. I tipped it into the blender and blended as Nava Atlas instructed but the agar hadn't thickened enough and after overnight in the fridge it was still more sauce than block of cheese. I poured the cheese mixture into a saucepan and heated until it thickened. Once the agar had thickened, the mixture set within an hour or two.
- I also added turmeric for more cheesy yellow. See above photos to see the difference in colour before and after I added turmeric).
- Before the mixture had thickened, I used three ramekins but after it thickened, two ramekins were enough.
- I left some of the mixture in the fridge for a few days before thickening it on the stovetop and it was fine.
- If you don't have vegan mayonnaise, I suggest using a mixture of 1 tbsp cornflour (cornstarch) and 1 tbsp cider vinegar and 2 tbsp olive oil.
On the Stereo:
The World of Michael Nyman
Vegan Month of Food October 2012. Go to my Vegan MoFo list for more of my Vegan MoFo posts.