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When buying leeks be sure to choose fresh organic leeks, as they are rich in flavor and in nutrition. Look for uniform, long, firm, white stalks with healthy root bulb. Avoid stems with withered, yellow discolor tops. Once at home, wrap in a paper towel and place inside the refrigerator where they stay fresh for up to a week.
It is important to really wash them well. I hope that you don’t mind me taking a moment to share simple instructions on how to wash leeks. When I first started using them, I didn’t know about this so just in case there is “another me” out there, I thought it would be best to share.
Dirt likes to hide in between all the layers . Start by washing off the leek and then trim away the root end. Then slice the lengthwise, avoiding using the last couple of inches of the dark green end. Follow by making crosswise cuts along the leek. Place the chopped leeks into a bowl and fill with cold water. Agitate the leeks in the water to dislodge any dirt that may be clinging to them. Dump the leeks into a colander, rinse one more time and then place in a new bowl. Use a dry paper towel to soak up as much water as possible.
If you can’t find leeks you can substitute out with green garden onions. Those long skinny ones, not the bulbed onions. I think that those would be too strong for this delicate recipe. If you need this recipe to be nut-free, you can use soaked sunflower seeds instead.
I don’t have any recommendations for replacing the agar that will give the cheese the same texture. Agar is not a raw product but it does have some great health benefits to it so I feel ok for us to have it in our diet. I served this cheese on a Raw Pumpernickel Bread that I created. (recipe to follow one day soon)
One of the greatest joys when creating raw food recipes is experimenting with different ingredients… a practice that I highly encourage. Daily I get questions regarding substitutions. Of course we all might have different dietary needs and tastes which could necessitate altering a recipe. I love to share with you what I create for myself, my husband, friends and family. I spend a lot of time selecting the right ingredients with a particular goal in mind, looking to build a certain flavor and texture.
So as you experiment with substitutions, remember they are what they sound like, they are substitutes for the preferred item. Generally they are not going to behave, taste, or have the same texture as the suggested ingredient. Some may work, and others may not and I can’t promise what the results will be unless I’ve tried them myself. So have fun, don’t be afraid, and remember, substituting is how I discovered many of my unique dishes.
I know this doesn’t look appealing. I placed a basil leaf in the bottom of the container
before I poured the cheese mix into it.
I then removed it once I popped the cheese out. I was curious what it would look like.
Again. be creative with the containers that you. It adds a lot of flare to it. :) Enjoy!