Cheese is one of my favorite things in life.
Hard cheeses. Firm cheeses. Soft cheeses. Smoked cheeses. Aged cheeses.
Cold. Sliced. Shredded. Grated. Hot. Melted. Bubbling. Sauce. Dip. Spread.
…Oh sorry… I got a little carried away here. I just… really love cheese.
One of the biggest problems that most people have when attempting to go dairy-free, is that there are almost no GREAT dairy-free cheese options. There are some okay ones. There are even some pretty tasty ones. My problem is that finding one that tastes great cold or hot, slices and shreds, has melting capabilities, and doesn’t have several ingredients I am no supposed to eat (soy and potato starch, I’m looking at you!) has been a great struggle.
I found a recipe online, and I decided to give it a go. I made slight changes, and I am posting it for you here. Step-by-(easy)step!
Ladies and Gents, without further ado, I give you, the most amazing sliced, shredded, cold, or hot and melted Vegan Smoked Gouda that is soy-free, gluten-free, and nightshade-free.
– 1 13.5oz or 14oz can of full fat coconut milk
– 1 Tablespoon of fresh squeezed lemon juice
– 1 Tablespoon of a natural Liquid Smoke (for a less intense smoke flavor, use only 1/2 TBS)
– 1/4 Cup of water with 1 teaspoon removed
– 1/2 teaspoon of Coconut Liquid Aminos
– 2 heaping Tablespoons of Nutritional Yeast Flakes
– 2 Tablespoons of Agar-Agar POWDER (you’ll need about 8 Tablepsoons if you’re using flakes)
– 2 teaspoons of Real Salt
– 1 teaspoon of the calcium water that you make from the special type of pectin that I linked to above
– 1 Tablespoon of Tapioca Starch
– 1 teaspoon of Xanthan Gum (often used in gluten-free baking and vegan baking)
1. Mix corn starch, tapioca starch, and xanthan gum well in small bowl and set aside.
2. Add the coconut milk, lemon juice, liquid smoke, water, coconut aminos, nutritional yeast, agar-agar, salt, and pectin and calcium water to a high-powered blender like a Blendtec. Blend until completely blended.
3. Pour blended ingredients into a sauce pan, and heat over a medium-high heat, stirring constantly with a silicone spatula until a boil is reached (make sure you are scraping the bottom and the sides well while stirring).
4. Reduce the heat to medium, and boil (while stirring constantly) for five minutes (set a timer).
5. QUICKLY pour the heated mixture into a high powdered blender (like a Blendtec) or a strong food processor.
6. Immediately add the powdered mixture that you have set aside (corn starch, tapioca starch, and xanthan gum) on top of the liquid mix in the blender or food processor.
7. Working quickly, pulse the mix many times until it becomes almost like a thick ball of dough. Scrape the sides down if needed to make sure everything is incorporated well.
8. Scrape out the contents of the blender/food processor into a 6 to 8 inch glass Pyrex style bowl and press it all down well. It might be useful to VERY LIGHTLY oil the bottom of inside of the dish, but I don’t think it is totally necessary.
9. Chill in the glass dish inside the fridge over night!!! After this you can turn the cheese out onto a plate to slice, serve, shred, whatever!
10. To store cheese, put in sealed baggies and store in the fridge for up to a week.