Giving up dairy was not easy…mainly because I loved cheese so much.
During my vegetarian years, nearly every meal I ate contained some form of cheese. Cheddar cheese sprinkled on scrambled eggs, cream cheese spread on sandwiches, mozzarella cheese melted into pizza and ricotta cheese baked into casseroles. I was a bit of a cheese freak!
Once I learned that all the dairy in my diet could be contributing to the stomach aches, sinus issues and stubborn excess pounds I was dealing with at the time, it was a no-brainer to give the dairy-free life a whirl. Relief came quickly, and I’ve since become a big believer in the benefit of greatly reducing or even eliminating dairy consumption completely.
But what was I going to bake into my casseroles? And what would I spread on my sandwiches?
Don’t even think about suggesting soy-based, fake cheese products. Not only do these “foods” not taste like cheese, they have been heavily processed. No. Thank. You.
This Dairy-Free Cheese Spread, made with raw cashews, has done the trick — working beautifully in baking as well as simple spreading. It’s mild, creaminess adds that texture dimension that’s lost when cheese is removed.
- Place the cashews in hot water and soak for 10 minutes and then discard the water.
- Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth and creamy. May take 5 minutes or longer, so be patient and wait until it’s really creamy.