• Alaina

Road Trip Week 6: Making Creamy Cashew Ricotta Cheese

One of the states we're virtually exploring this week is Wisconsin, which is the top cheese producer in the country. Wisconsin may be known as America's Dairyland, but we decided to do a twist on this week's regional recipe. Did you know you can make your own cheese at home without using any dairy products?


In this video, Shilo shows how easy it is to make a creamy ricotta "cheese" using cashews!


Did you know it was possible to make cheese using cashews? If you decide to try cashew cheese for yourself, let us know how it goes (and what you think of it!). Don't forget - we're sharing the recipes we chose to make to represent each region we visit, but you don't have to make the same things we do. If cashew cheese isn't up your alley, try something else!


The recipe Shilo used, which is listed below, is from the blog A Life Well Planted.


Creamy Cashew Ricotta

Servings: 4 1/4-cup servings


Ingredients

• 1 cup raw cashews, presoaked (or precooked)

• 6 garlic cloves, roasted (do not use raw garlic)

• 1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

• 2 Tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon water

• 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

• 1/4 teaspoon sea salt


Instructions

1. Presoak (or precook) the cashews; see notes.

2. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Put an untrimmed garlic bulb, with at least 5 cloves, into a small covered baking dish. A ramekin or garlic roaster works well, or any small covered baking dish. Roast it in the preheated oven until the garlic aroma starts to fill the kitchen and the cloves begin to soften; this will take about 15 minutes.

3. Put the presoaked (or precooked) cashews in the food processor bowl with 5 cloves of roasted and peeled garlic. Add the lemon juice, water, salt, and pepper. Run the processor until the cashew ricotta is creamy, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. This will take at least five minutes.


Notes:

To Presoak Cashews

Place the cashews in a quart-sized canning jar (or in a bowl) with at least 2 cups of water; cover and let them soak overnight in the refrigerator. Pour into a strainer, rinse, and drain well. Now the cashews are recipe-ready.


To Precook Cashews

Gently simmer the cashews in at least 2 cups of water for 15 minutes. Pour into a strainer, rinse, and drain well. Now the cashews are recipe-ready.


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