Photo by Michelle Schoffro Cook
Yogurt cheese is exactly what it sounds like — cheese made from yogurt. However, most commercial varieties of yogurt are filled with thickeners, such as xanthan gum, carrageenan, guar gum, or some other agent that interferes with extracting excess water from the yogurt in order to turn it into cheese. For best results with this vegan cheese recipe, it’s important to make a batch of quality yogurt full of live cultures and devoid of thickening agents. Because this version is made with yogurt that’s been made
by culturing cashews, it’s also full of beneficial microbes.
Yield: Approximately 1 quart.
- 3 cups raw, unsalted cashews
- 2 cups filtered water
- 1 probiotic capsule or 1/2 teaspoon probiotic powder
- Place cashews, water, and contents of the probiotic capsule in a medium-sized glass bowl with a lid. Discard empty capsule shell. Stir until combined. Cover and let sit for 8 to 24 hours, depending on how tangy you like your yogurt.
- Transfer ingredients to a blender and purée until smooth.
- Place a cheesecloth-lined sieve over a deep bowl. Pour yogurt into sieve to allow excess water to drip out, and let sit for a few hours, or until thickened. You may need to gently squeeze out the excess moisture to ensure the yogurt thickens sufficiently.
- Place yogurt cheese into a cheesecloth-lined mold of your choice. Refrigerate until firm.
- Remove cheese from mold, then remove cheesecloth before serving. Keeps in refrigerator in a covered container for up to 1 week.