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Raw Sun-dried Tomato and Basil Cheese Spread

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Sun-dried-Tomato-and-Basil-Cheese-Spread7This recipe yields a soft, creamy cheese that is perfect to use a spread or as a dip.  If you are familiar with cream cheese, it has the same basic texture.  As you can see in the photo to the right, when molded, it will hold its shape.

As you might have already figured out, this recipe is dairy-free.  The base is created from soaked cashews which gives it that perfect texture.  You can use other nuts instead, just be aware that there will be flavor differences.

For those of you who are new to raw food recipes or just new to nut cheeses, I want to quickly touch on a few notes here.  To create the “cheesy” taste,  I used lemon juice and probiotics.  The probiotics also aid in the fermenting process.  And they add great health benefits so I suggest that you give it a try so your body can reap the rewards. :)  Below, in the ingredient list, I provided a link for the one I used.  If you don’t have that particular one or already have another brand on hand, use what you can get or have.  This probiotic powder comes in capsules, so you will be emptying them out into a teaspoon.  I had to empty seven to get the amount I needed.

The fermenting / culturing process can take 24-48 hours.  There are two factors that come into play.  The climate where you live and how strong a  ”cheesy tang” taste you like.  After 24 hours, take a peak and do a tiny tasting.  Once you put the cheese in the fridge, the fermentation process slows down big time.  So get it to the stage that you like before chilling.

This cheese has a pretty mild flavor.  Sun-dried tomatoes and basil are a marriage made in culinary pantry heaven.  Be sure to use sun-dried tomatoes that are not packed in oil.  Ok, off you go…skuttle into the kitchen and get busy.  Be sure to look through all the photos below for more ideas on what to do with this cheese. :)

Sun-dried-Tomato-and-Basil-Cheese-Spread8Ingredients: yields 2 1/2 cups

Cheese base:

  • 2 cups cashews, soaked 2+ hours
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp probiotics powder

After fermentation:

  • 1⁄4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, minced
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, rehydrate

Preparation:

Sun-dried-Tomato-and-Basil-Cheese-Spread9

Cheese base and fermentation:

  1. After soaking the cashews, drain and discard the water.
  2. Combine the cashews, water and probiotic powder  in a high-speed blender until smooth and creamy.  If you detect any grittiness, keep blending.
  3. Place a strainer inside of a bowl and line the strainer with cheesecloth, allowing the edges to drape over the edge of the bowl.  Place a nut bag in the center of the cheesecloth and pour the cheese into the bag, close and pile the rest of the bag on top, then wrap the cheesecloth around everything.  If you don’t have a nut bag, you can pour the cheese mix straight into the cheesecloth, just be sure to double or triple the layers.  The nut bag is my personal preference but is not required.
  4. Place a weight on top of the cheesecloth ball.  It should not be so heavy that it pushes the cheese through the cloth, but heavy enough to gently start to press the liquid out.  I use a mason jar filled with water or rocks for the weight.  Cover everything with a towel.
  5. Leave to ferment for 24-48 hours at room temperature.

After fermentation:

  1. Rehydrate the sun-dried tomatoes by covering them with warm water.  Set aside while you get everything else ready.
  2. Once fermentation is complete, remove the cheese from the cloth and place in a medium-sized bowl.
  3. Stir in the salt, nutritional yeast,and  lemon juice.
  4. Drain and discard the soak water from the sun-dried tomatoes.  Squeeze the excess water from the tomatoes before adding to the cheese.  Rough chop if needed.
  5. Mix in the basil and tomatoes.
  6. Store in the fridge in an airtight container for 5-7 days.
  7. If you want to use a mold, place the cheese into a mold and cover with plastic.  Chill over night.  I used a food ring.  I didn’t need to oil it or anything.  After it has chilled, just lift the ring off and serve.

 

Raw-Sun-dried-Basil-Cheese1

This is the probiotic that I used but you can use any brand that you have on
hand.  I had to open seven capsules to create one teaspoons worth.

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After blending the cheese base to a smooth cream, pour into a nut bag.  You can
use cheesecloth instead.  After years of making these cheeses, I prefer to line my
container with cheesecloth, but pour the base into a nut bag.  This makes it
simpler for removing it once the fermentation process is over.  This is just a preference.

Raw-Sun-dried-Basil-Cheese13

 Oops, forgot the cheesecloth, do as I say, not as I do. hehe

Raw-Sun-dried-Basil-Cheese14

Be sure to put the colander inside of another bowl to catch any liquid that may
drain out.  Close the top of the nut bag / cheesecloth and put a weight on top.
The purpose of the weight to put some pressure on the cheese mix, helping it
to drain any liquid that releases.  Don’t make the weight too heavy that you start
to see the mix oozing through the cheesecloth.

Raw-Sun-dried-Basil-Cheese15

Food rings are a fun tool to have on hand.  Cheap investment that reaps big rewards.

Sun-Dried-Tomato-and-Basil-Cheese1

I decided to only mold 3 and keep the extra in a dish to use for a quick spread.

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Before removing the food ring, be sure to place the cheese on the plate or platter that
you want to present it on.  A bit more difficult to transfer once freed.

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I think this cheese spread is so beautiful.

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Raw-Sun-dried-Tomato-and-Basil-Cheese-Spread96

Let’s take this cheese to another level.  If you have any left over, spread it out
onto the teflex sheet that comes with the dehydrator.  Score into crackers and
dehydrate at 115 degrees (F) for 6-8 hours or until dry.   These will not be
sturdy crackers,  rather crumbly to be honest, but greatly enjoyed with a salad.

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Raw-Sun-dried-Tomato-and-Basil-Cheese-Spread98

You can also, chop it up into crumbles to sprinkle over your salad.  So many options!

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43 thoughts on “Raw Sun-dried Tomato and Basil Cheese Spread

  1. anne-marie says:

    Hello Amie Sue, such a pleasure to open the computer and see a message from you. What a beautiful and mouthwatering picture! I will try this recipe as soon as possible (difficult to find powder probiotic here) and share with friends because sharing is double pleasure.
    My friends love it when I present new raw food recipes.
    Thank you so much again for your help by sharing your creations! Sunshine from Switherland to your home, Anne-Marie

    • amie-sue says:

      Hello Anne-Marie,

      I tend to order my probiotics on-line. Not sure if that is an option for you. If you can’t find it, you could use some nutritional yeast or lemon juice and skip the fermentation stage. It won’t be the same but another form of goodness! Have a wonderful weekend. :) amie sue

  2. Deborah G says:

    Good Morning!
    There are quite a few probiotics that are available in loose form. Having it in bulk (like yeast in a jar or bag as opposed to packets) is very convenient to have in the house if you make cheese regularly and economical too! Is there any particular probiotic (lactobacillus for example) that is preferable for making cheese?
    Thank you for the delicious recipe as always!

    • amie-sue says:

      Hi Deborah, I haven’t ever seen probiotics in bulk form. Not to sure that it appeals to me. I would worry about the stability of it and so forth. Where you do you purchase it that way? amie sue

      • Deborah G says:

        I probably should have used the word loose instead of bulk. Nature’s Way and New Chapter are two of the companies off the top of my head that can be purchased in health food stores or on line. Vitacost even ships it with an ice pack. I prefer not to ingest (or waste) any more capsules than I have to!

        • Deborah G says:

          I should also add that they are found in the refrigerated section and are stable. My understanding is that a capsule will not ensure any more stability than a room temperature vs. a refrigerated product although heating a room temp. or placing a refrigerated probiotic on a shelf for a period of time will eventually effect a probiotic. And in researching some of the common bacteria’s for cheese I have found some that turn up more often ( the Lactobacillus in particular)and they do seem to impart more flavor and acidity to the finished product. Not sure how similar that would be to nut based cheese but a great experiment none the less! Look forward to making this, thank you as always AmieSue!

        • amie-sue says:

          Oh I see Deborah, all I could visualize was this powder sitting open in those bins. haha Now it makes sense. :) Thanks for sharing this with us. It will be helpful for others too! Have a great day, amie sue

  3. Mary says:

    Amie Sue,

    Just a quick note to say Thank You for all you do.

  4. Laurie says:

    I love your imagination Amie Sue! So many ways to go with this recipe.

    Were the probiotics the thing you were talking about on another recipe, that you were trying to experiment with as a substitute for nutritional yeast?

    And as always, wonderful photos for representation!

    Chausito!

    • amie-sue says:

      Good afternoon Laurie,

      Thank you… raw foods are so versatile! No, this wasn’t the product. I am use to using either probiotics or nutritional yeast in recipes. I am tinkering with a third. :) Have a wonderful weekend, amie sue

  5. Lesley says:

    That cheese looks delicious as do all your recipes. It’s a must do!

  6. Uli says:

    Wonderful and delicious recipe, Amie Sue. Am going to make it this weekend.
    Your recipes are so inspiring! Thank you.

    • amie-sue says:

      Thank you Uli. I would love to hear what you think of the recipe(s). Please keep in touch and have a wonderful time in the kitchen! amie sue

  7. Maureen says:

    Just gorgeous! I’m heading to the kitchen now to make this spread. Please tell me what crackers and flatbread you have pictured with it. Those look fabulous and I must make them too!

    Thank you so much for all of these fabulous and beautifully presented recipes!

  8. esl says:

    Amie Sue,
    this is esl with the ‘milk glass bottle’ question from yesterday. :)
    Now, I have a question about these probiotics that you use in the cream cheese recipe here for fermenting/culturing purposes: I know that probiotics are harvested by the bacteria actually eating on dairy ‘material’. I know the dairy is NOT in the final probiotic, however dairy was used in the process. I am a strict vegan and am not ok with consuming probiotics that were harvested off of dairy product- I guess it’s the Lactobacillus?? Do you know of any completely vegan probiotics, in which dairy was not used in the process? Will a probiotic work (fermenting/culturing) if there is no Lactobacillus in it?
    I found this one, it says vegan, but in the ingredients I still see Lactobacillus:
    http://www.vitasprings.com/probio-1b-defense-vegan-guard-90-vegicaps-rainbow-light.html

    I know that for example there is a vegan lactic acid used in vegan products. Just because it has a lacto in it, doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s milk/dairy derived.
    What’s your take on this? Do you know of a probiotic that is completely vegan/not harvested via dairy?
    Thank you again so much! I really appreciate your help!

    esl :)
    Have a great night!

    • amie-sue says:

      Hello “milk bottle lady” hehe…

      Shew, intense question here. One that is going to require some good research. Since this is a strong passion for you, I would guess that you have really done your homework on this.

      After spending some time researching this… I feel that I need to go back to school and get some initials behind my name. lol

      But, I did find one product that I am intrigued with… I read through the description and ingredients. What do you think of this?

      http://www.naturalhealthyconcepts.com/vitamin-code-raw-kombucha-GL60-p-garden-of-life.html?gclid=CPbDquiS4boCFe1xQgodcwsAgw

      I do feel that this would work in the fermenting process of the nut cheeses here. I am going to contact the maker and see if they will send me a sample and try it. But in the meantime, what do you think of their wrap? I value your opinion because this a strong conviction for you.

      Lastly, if you want to avoid the research of dealing with probiotics have you ever made Rejuvalac? I learned how to make this many many years ago but we don’t use wheat berries in our house. Ann Wigmore was huge on this. This could be a possible option if you are interested. I don’t have a write up on it but here is a site on how to make it.

      http://thenourishingcook.com/what-is-rejuvelac/

      Let me know your thoughts. Good night, amie sue :)

      • esl says:

        Amie Sue,
        thank you so much for your prompt reply and for doing a search yourself.
        I like the Vitamin Code Raw Kombucha supplement you shared above. I looked at all the info and there is not any lactobacillus listed in the ingredients, hopefully. But since it is a kombucha product, I assume if I used it to make your raw cheese spread it would help with the fermentation/culturing of the ‘cheese’.
        I think I am going to order it and try it out. But since I have not used the regular probiotics with lactobacillus, if I used the vitamin code I would not know the different outcome, if any. If you do end up using it, I would appreciate you sharing with us.
        I will also let you know how my cream cheese comes out when I make it.

        I did make the irish moss gel, and hoping to use it in a recipe soon!
        Thank you so much!

        :)
        esl

        • esl says:

          Oh, I forgot to mention. I have not tried to make rejuvelac. Someone said it could be made from quinoa or brown rice – maybe a better option for your household since you don’t deal with gluten. :)

          esl

        • amie-sue says:

          esl,

          Well, I heard back from Garden of Life. They don’t send out samples of this and they also wrote this… “RAW Kombucha delivers 5 billion CFU of S. boulardii, however it is not a probiotic product or a culture starter.” I would still like to try it though. Perhaps one day. I am thinking that rejevelac might be a great option for you.

          You know, I have heard of others making rejuvelac with quinoa, I just might have to try it come day. So many things to do and try! hehe

          Have a blessed day! amie sue

          • esl says:

            Hi Amie Sue,
            I did order the raw kombucha from Garden of Life. I will give it a try when I get it. And let you know what I get.
            However, since I have never used a probiotic before to ferment a vegan raw cream cheese, what should I look for? Sourness?

            Thank you!
            esl

            • amie-sue says:

              I hope that it works out esl. And yes, a sourness or a “tang”… like you can taste in real cheese. Or even a “sharpness”… funny to find the right words to describe it. Keep me posted. In the end, no matter what the outcome, the kombucha capsules sound good. :) Blessings, amie sue

              • esl says:

                Oh, Amie Sue,
                I am trying to remember what real cheeses taste like…haven’t had it in 16 years. hehe
                So, I’m in the fermentation/culturing process right now…tonight will be the first 24 hours, I think I’m going to let it stand for 48, till tomorrow evening and see how it turns out.
                My cashew, water, probiotic ‘cream’ was like a runny cream cheese, I was worried it might have been a little too ‘runny’. Last night when I poured the mixture into the nut milk bag there was some ‘thick water’ coming out, but not too much. I almost thought the whole thing was going to go right through the milk bag. lol
                This morning, when I looked at the bottom of the bowl, there was just a small amount of whitish liquid that had drained out and I threw it out. When I touch the nut milk bag the ‘cream cheese’ inside feels soft. I hope that is normal. And also it smells ‘yeasty’. So, maybe after all the raw kombucha probiotic might work.
                Like I said I will let it ferment till Sunday evening.
                I will definitely keep you posted on how it turns out!
                Have a great weekend!!!

                esl :)

                • amie-sue says:

                  lol esl…. Well then let me say… this recipe tastes like real cheese! haha We are resetting the tastebuds. :) I know what you mean though. When I get asked to restructure cooked recipes… turning them into healthier raw recipes, I often have to search my data banks and try to remember what some foods USE to taste like. :)

                  It sounds like you are doing everything correctly. All the textures that you have mentioned are spot on. Keep in mind this cheese won’t get “hard” like a block of cheddar cheese. There are ways to make it more like that but the process takes about 4-5 weeks of patience. :)

                  The white puddle in the bowl below… is normal.

                  The yeasty smell… yep, speaks of fermentation. I can’t wait to see what you think of the end version. Keep in mind, if you house is REALLY warm, like above 70 degrees (F), it might ferment quicker so just keep an eye on it.

                  Have a great evening! amie sue

  9. esl says:

    Hello, Amie Sue,
    So, here’s a second (not last) update on my cream cheese, so far.
    So, yesterday, Saturday evening after 24 hours of fermentation I check on my cashew, water, probiotic mix in the nut milk bag, and it appears way too soft and watery to me, as if it will never hold shape if I used a food ring. I know this cheese will never be as firm as cheddar cheese block, but I was expecting it to be of similar consistency to raw vegan cheesecake before it sets in a fridge. My mixture was really soft, also it smelled like yeast, as if I am proofing dough and it has risen – that kind of smell. So, since I thought it was too watery, I decided to ADD an extra 1 cup of soaked cashews and 2 capsules of probiotic. In my original batch I used 5 capsules which made for 1 tsp (you mentioned you used 7), so my total would be 7 capsules and 3 cups of cashews measured before soaking. NO additional water was added the second time. I blended the old mixture and the 1 cup of cashews + probiotic again in my blender, and let set overnight on my counter covered with towel, and on top I placed a medium size jar filled with water.
    Today, on Sunday afternoon, the ‘dough’ lol…has risen again and had tipped the jar with water to one side. Didn’t know I was making pizza?! haha Not too much water had drained this time. I squeezed the nut bag to remove air from the mixture, scooped the cheese out and put it in a bowl. This second batch is indeed a little denser. I added the sea salt, nutritional yeast and lemon, and put it in the fridge for now. I had ordered organic sun dried tomatoes which will arrive tomorrow. When I have the sun dried tomatoes I will add them to the cheese with the basil.
    After being in the fridge for about 1 hour, the cream cheese is a little firmer, but still creamy ( which is normal for blended cashews to get firmer in the fridge anyway).

    I will give you a third and final update when I have completed my raw sun-dried tomato and basil cream cheese! :)

    Now, in hind sight, maybe I should have not added the extra cup of cashews. I don’t know… Your pictures just look soooo perfect, and we all try to make ours look like yours – that even a slight deviation from ‘your visuals’ made me think I’m doing something wrong. Your mixture in the bowl looks so white, mine looked like cement. lol And then yours holds shape when the ring is removed, although it is still soft and creamy. I know this is my first time doing this cream cheese, and I will definitely give it another try without adding the extra cup of cashews. I will definitely let you know how that turns out…

    And here we go with the taste: O_O
    The taste is like it’s spoiled and sour, with a tang… I’m not sure if this is how real cheese tasted like – honestly, I have never tried many variety of cheeses – I stopped eating it many years ago before I moved to the usa. I have never eaten cheddar or any other sharp cheeses. Feta is what I mostly ate in my home country, and a variety of cheese similar to american yellow, which is mild. So, that sour taste is kind of new to me. But I will eat it, and I’m sure with the basil and sun dried tomatoes will be much better. I may add some olives, too…

    Thank you again for your wonderful recipes and I will be back soon with my final update…

    Have a great Sunday night!
    esl :)

    • amie-sue says:

      Oh wow esl… thank you for the detailed update. :) Sometimes, you just need to trust the process. I know that can be hard when you don’t understand what to expect. It thickens as it sits in the fridge, that is how come it held so well in my mold/ring. It sounds like you have quite the experiment going on. Do you have your lab coat on? haha I applaud you for trying the recipe. I know it was risky but glad you did. It is all a learning process. I look forward to hearing more. Have a blessed night my friend. amie sue

      • esl says:

        HI Amie Sue,
        so…I’m still waiting for my organic sun-dried tomatoes to arrive in the mail – tomorrow!! But in the mean time my cream cheese has been staying in the fridge. For two days already. And yes, I have been trying it… to me it just still tastes and smells like spoiled dough. Do you think it’s due to the Raw Kombucha probiotic I used? I would be curious to know how yours will turn out if you ever give the kombucha probiotic a try – would the taste and texture be the same as the cream cheese you make with your original probiotic. So, keep me posted if you decide to use the kombucha.
        Also, as you said once the cream cheese is put in the fridge, the fermentation should stop since it’s cold. But I have noticed that every time I go and stir my cream cheese (to taste it) that has been staying in the fridge for more than 12 hours, it still sort of appears ‘airy’ and fluffy – if you know what I mean. It’s not dense at all. It’s smooth as far as texture is concerned, but it’s airy and fluffy. Weird…
        Do you experience the same things with your cream cheese?

        I think I will try one of the other cheeses that don’t require fermentation because the taste I got with mine is a little off, to me at least. I wonder if I just add 1 tbsp of irish moss gel will it help hold shape a bit, not to be firm, but to sort of not be runny?… (omitting the probiotic all together)

        So, I solely based my decision of making this raw vegan cream cheese on the photographs you have posted! :) You better win that award for raw photographer! :))

        Have a lovely Tuesday!
        esl

        • amie-sue says:

          Good evening Esl,

          Spoiled dough…. hmmm, you description makes me a little nervous. It is hard to comment on this because we all taste things differently. I am tempted to tell you to start over only because I don’t know if it went bad or not and I don’t want you to get sick. I have made a lot of fermented cheeses and they have all turned out. The only time that I have experienced where it appears ‘airy’ and fluffy is when I am making a cashew yogurt. You don’t use a weight on top when making that. The first time I made cashew yogurt, it bubbled up so much that it overflowed in my cabinet, making quite the mess. haha

          I don’t want you to get discouraged with making these cheeses, because they are so wonderful in taste and health. It might just have been the kombutcha capsules and perhaps they don’t work like normal probiotics. This was our experiment. Are you willing to try making with a normal probiotic and see how it differs? I know the process works, I have been doing it for years. I so appreciate that you trusted my recipe based off of the picture. lol But I don’t want you to leave raw fermented cheeses on a “sour note” :).

          Let me know your thoughts… together we will work through this. amie sue

          • esl says:

            Hi Amie Sue,
            what I think it might be the probiotic Kombucha I used. It most likely has a different effect than the regular probiotic you are using to make your cream cheese.
            If I tried making this cream cheese with the regular probiotic, I would not eat it. So, it’s not worth wasting the ingredients.
            I will definitely make other cheeses you have offered on your website that do not require fermentation.

            I actually ate half of the cream cheese waiting for my sun-dried tomatoes, which finally came today. I was trying to convince myself that the sour dough taste was ‘ok’ and kept eating. I don’t think I will get sick – cashews and Kombucha are good for you after all, right.. :)
            And I do love drinking Kombucha and it’s the only time the fermentation tastes good to me.

            Going back to the cream cheese: honestly, I had a gut feeling the smell and airiness was off…it’s ok, though. I don’t regret trying it out. That’s how we learn! :)

            I will be in touch, and thank you for your comments and always replying back!

            Have a lovely week!
            esl

            • amie-sue says:

              Well there is always trying the rejuvalac if interested. Thank you for your positive attitude. :) There are so many wonderful ways to enjoy raw foods. You can pick and choose. Have a great evening Esl! amie sue

  10. esl says:

    HI Amie Sue,
    hope you are having a wonderful Sunday night!

    So, I just wanted to catch up on my raw cheese making fermenting experience. :)

    But first, a few questions regarding the probiotics you do use:
    1. With this recipe you provide a photo of PB 8 – which according to the label has 14 Billion bacteria per serving, and a serving is 2 capsules, the label says.
    http://nouveauraw.com/ingredients/superfoods/nutrition-now-pb-8-pro-biotic-acidophilus-tablets-vegetarian-120-count-bottles/

    2. In another recipe you use this probiotic: http://nouveauraw.com/ingredients/superfoods/renew-life-ultimate-flora-critical-colon-80-billion-30-caps/
    Now this has 80 billion cultures per serving, and a serving is 1 capsule.

    And most of the recipes requiring fermenting call for 1tsp of probiotic powder. I guess the number of cultures per capsule matters, but you still use 1 tsp no matter what that number is?? Just wanted to know, since this probiotic helps with fermentation and culturing, and flavor of the cheese, does it matter how much we put in it?

    Ok, now with my second attempt to make fermented cheese:
    I did some research and asked other raw vegans what kind of probiotic they used to make their cultured cheeses, and came across this one: http://www.amazon.com/NOW-Foods-Probiotic-10-Billion-Vcaps/dp/B0031RJXCK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1387157350&sr=8-1&keywords=now+probiotics+50+billion

    It is supposedly vegan and soy was used as the culturing medium, and not dairy as in most probiotics. So, I gave it a try.
    However, I was told to use only 1 capsule of this probiotic, which has 50 billion organisms of probiotic bacteria. Again, I used 2 cups of soaked cashews and some herbs/nutritional yeast after fermentation. But seeing how you use 1 tsp of probiotic powder, I think that maybe I didn’t use enough.
    Well, at least one good thing: after 24 hours in room temperature by cheese did not get as fluffy and airy as it did when I used that Kombucha probiotic. I probably used about 1/2 water or so, though.
    My batch was able to equally fill 2 food rings.
    One of the batches I already ate after 3 days in the fridge. I have to say I think it tasted like cheese, and it did hold the shape after I removed the food ring, but like yours it was creamy in texture. Not firm and solid enough to cut into slices.
    My other batch is still in the fridge firming up. I want to keep it in the fridge for two weeks and see if it will get a bit firmer and also cheesier in taste.
    I do not have a dehydrator yet, so I will not be using one.
    But in your opinion, if I really want to ‘age this cheese’ for two weeks should I keep it in a fridge or on my countertop instead (not too hot at home, about 70F now in the winter)??

    Overall, I am a bit happier with this second attempt of making a fermented cheese – the new probiotic really helped.

    To flavor my cheese I added minced garlic, sun dried tomatoes, dill, nutritional yeast, salt and pepper.
    It was good. Not sure if it tasted like cheese. When my second batch is ready in one week, I will let my non vegan husband taste it. He’s not very open to these things, but he will give it a try… hehe

    Thanks Amie Sue!!
    best regards,
    esl

    • amie-sue says:

      Shew Esl…. hehe Sounds like you have been busy. :)

      I am sorry to say that I don’t have a lengthy scientific answer for your question. I don’t get into counting the millions or billions of bacteria that each recipe will use. I use what probiotics that I have on hand. As a rule of thumb, I typically use 1 tsp in a recipe, sometimes 2. Regardless, I always have success in the fermentation process. I can see that if I use a lower number in bacterias (depending on the brand) that I might have to let the recipe ferment a bit longer to get that stronger taste.

      You can age your cheese for up to 5 weeks but I keep mine in the fridge during this length of time. It should get firmer over time as well. Making raw cheeses is always an adventure. I am so glad that you found a probiotic that works for you. :)

      Not sure that I helped… it was great to hear from you Esl… have a great evening, amie sue

      • esl says:

        HI Amie Sue,
        thank you for your quick reply!

        Ok, no problem regarding the amount you use of probiotics. I just thought I’d ask a pro, before I make my next batch. I will use 1tsp instead of 1 capsule and see how it differs. Thank you!!

        On to soaking the cashews!! :)

        Thank you always for your lovely recipes!

        On another note, I did mention that I don’t yet own a dehydrator. Would it be the same if I use my oven and heat it to 110F-115F, or is totally not going to work?
        Also, since you have to use the dehydrator for up to 8-10 or more hours, are you electric bills through the roof? :/ Just wondering.

        Thanks a bunch, Amie Sue!

        Enjoy this Monday and the rest of the week!!

        esl

        • amie-sue says:

          Good evening Esl,

          Your welcome… I do my best to respond as quickly as I can. :)

          If your oven gets to that low of a temp, you should be just fine. I run my dehydrators ALL the time and don’t see a huge spike in our bill. I hardly use the oven, so perhaps it just all balances out. hehe I would be lost without my dehydrators. :)

          I hope that you are staying warm! amie sue

  11. Kathleen says:

    The cheese spread was delicious. Great flavor combination with the sun-dried tomato and basil. Served it with your thin crust pizza crackers. Everyone loved it! Thank you once again!

    • amie-sue says:

      That is wonderful Kathleen. Thank you for letting me know how it went. I can the that the flavors of the two would be a dynamic! Have a blessed day, amie sue

  12. Yana says:

    Wow, this turned out to be delish. Thank you sooo much.

  13. Kathy says:

    Absolutely incredible simply outstanding in everyway! Also your presentation and photograph’s are gorgeous and just as much a treat to enjoy as the food and recipes you share.

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