Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Bree and Smoky Bree Vegan Cheese Recipes: Dairy-free, Gluten-free, Nut-free, Soy-free


My husband grew up in a European home (he was born in Canada, the only child in his family to have accomplished that) and cheese was a big feature of everyday eating and entertaining.

He loved cheese.  Any kind.  Soft sweet Camembert or "hand-made" Cheeses that smell and taste somewhat like a sporty boy's laundry (not that I've tasted that, but you know...).  I honestly don't think there is a cheese that he did not love.

Then.... we began to cross from ovo-lacto Vegetarian Land (a nice place to live if you adore dairy products and eggs) into Vegan territory.   We did it for health reasons, mainly (we ALL have dairy sensitivity and/or allergies), and for ethical reasons (our older son got physically ill when served an egg as a small child-- he was adamant that we were eating a baby chick-in-the-making.  And you know, he WAS right.

The more we learned about the many benefits of eating vegan, the faster our face accelerated into the vegan arena.  Three of the four of us are now vegan.  So, my husband has done some 'flexitarian' moves throughout our calling ourselves vegan (i.e., eating cheese here and there when he is out, mainly-- none comes into our house).  He still loves dairy cheese, but is not so much in love with being congested, having that moldy cheese breath, or knowing what the cholesterol is doing inside his arteries.

But it wasn't until I made these particular "Bree and Smoky Bree" recipes, that we both went "ah hah!"   Try them and see what you think!!

BREE CHEESE

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 can Full-Fat Coconut Milk (organic, of course)
  • 1 T. fresh Lemon juice (or 1 ice cube of frozen lemon juice)
  • 1/4 C. Water
  • 2 tsp. Coconut Aminos (or Bragg's Aminos)
  • 2 tsp. Sea Salt
  • 2 T. Nutritional Yeast (not Brewer's Yeast or Baker's Yeast)
  • 2 T. Agar Powder (not Agar flakes)
Powder Mix, measured out and sifted into a small bowl:
  • 2 T. Corn Starch (organic) or other starch such as Arrowroot or Potato Starch
  • 1 T. Tapioca Starch
  • 1 tsp. Xanthan Gum
  1. Blend the first 7 ingredients on high in a blender until fully mixed.  The coconut milk will look curdly, but that is okay-- it will smooth out in the next step.
  2. Pour the blender ingredients in a small saucepan and whisk continuously over medium-high heat until the mixture bowls.  Reduce heat and continue to whisk for another 5 minutes.  Remove the pan from the heat.  (HAVE YOUR POWDER MIX READY)
  3. Pour the hot mix into the blender, and then immediately add the Powder Mix.
  4. Blend right away until the mass gets thick (doesn't take long).  Scrape down the sides of the blender.
  5. Pour into any shape of container you wish.  You can lightly oil the pan, or you may use silicone containers that do not require oil.  I used a pie plate in this recipe and it is easy to cut wedges like you would with a wheel of actual brie.
  6. Allow it to set in the fridge for about 2 hours or overnight.
  7. Slice and use.  It becomes firmer over time.  Use up in about a week.  Makes a wonderful spread for sandwiches or on crackers, etc.  Eat for dessert with fruit of choice.
SMOKY BREE CHEESE


INGREDIENTS:



  • 1 can Full-Fat Coconut Milk (organic, of course)
  • 1 T. fresh Lemon juice (or 1 ice cube of frozen lemon juice
  • 1 T. Liquid Smoke (I used Hickory that I bought at the health store)
  • 1/4 C. Water
  • 1/2 tsp. Coconut Aminos (or Bragg's Aminos)
  • 2 tsp. Sea Salt
  • 2 T. Nutritional Yeast (not Brewer's Yeast or Baker's Yeast)
  • 2 T. Agar Powder (not Agar flakes)
Powder Mix, measured out and sifted into a small bowl:
  • 2 T. Corn Starch (organic) or other starch such as Arrowroot or Potato Starch
  • 1 T. Tapioca Starch
  • 1 tsp. Xanthan Gum
The directions for the Smoky Bree are the same as for the Bree, but with the addition of the Liquid Smoke, and a lesser amount of the Aminos.  

I made mine in large silicone muffin cups, but again, you can choose any shaped pan.  I got about 3 large muffin-size cheeses.





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