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Sunday, February 1, 2009

VERSATILE VEGAN CHEDDARY SPREAD, GRILLED CHEEZE FILLING, AND CHEEZE SAUCE BASE, ALL-IN-1

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I work on recipes so often that I often forget to make old favorites, but I've been making this one (from a book of mine circa 1999) alot these days as a low-fat snack. It's a spread that's super-easy to make, and it's great on toast (for breakfast!), in celery sticks (an old favorite), or just on crackers.

AND, I've just discovered that it is also delicious used as a filling for grilled (vegan) cheeze sandwiches-- why didn't I think of that before? This spread doesn't melt, but that doesn't matter, because it is already soft and creamy like melted cheese, so the grilling just heats it up. Yum!



Another recent discovery-- if you thin it out with about 1/2 cup nondairy milk to 1 cup of the spread, it makes a great "Cheese Sauce". (Whisk it well until it's smooth. This can be heated.) We loved it on streamed broccoli.



Give this recipe a whirl... it's definitely a "keeper"!

Printable Recipe

BRYANNA'S CHEDDARY SPREAD
Yield: 1 and 3/4 cups

UPDATE, Feb 2012: Last time I made this I added a twist from Betsy DiJulio's book, The Blooming Platter Cookbook.
She uses ia genius ingredient in her homemade vegan cheeses--  beer!  So I added a little beer to this recipe. It adds just the right amount of tangy fermented taste, which really adds to the over-all flavor of the spread, or dip. Thank you, Betsy!  But, in order to do this and not have it turn out too liquid-y, you have to crumble the silken tofu into a nut bag or a large square of white cotton sheeting-sort of material and twist and squeeze the bag until you have 1/4 cup of liquid from the tofu squeezed out.  Then proceed with the recipe, but add 1/4 cup of beer to the mixture.  Simple!
Recipe adapted from from my book "Soyfoods Cooking for a Positive Menopause".

12.3 oz (1 box) extra-firm SILKEN tofu, crumbled
1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
2 tablespoons tahini
2 tablespoons lemon juice (fresh or organic bottled)
1 1/2 tablespoons miso 
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon paprika (for a new flavor use all or half smoked paprika [pimenton])
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic granules or powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard powder

Mix all the ingredients in a food processor until VERY smooth.

Spoon into a covered container and refrigerate several hours to firm up. Keeps refrigerated about 1 week.

Nutrition Facts
Nutrition (per 2 tablespoons)
: 38.3 calories; 39% calories from fat; 1.8g total fat; 0.0mg cholesterol; 187.5mg sodium; 106.5mg potassium; 2.7g carbohydrates; 1.0g fiber; 0.5g sugar; 1.8g net carbs; 3.7g protein; 0.7 points.


Enjoy!

17 comments:

HayMarket8 said...

This looks really good. I also have a cheesy sauce that I make. I love the idea of a spread though! Great!

Joelle said...

Looks yummy! Love that it seems so versatile.

ace.maler said...

Nomnomnom! Looks delicious! Would it be okay to sub firm silken for the extra-firm, do you think?

Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

ace.maler-- probably-- it just might be a bit softer.

'River' (aka Pat) said...

Just what I've been looking for and here I find it by accident. I'd go a little easier on the salt, if I could - would that spoil it? Hope not. Shall be trying this soon. Many many thanks! Wow. One sauce/spread that is so versatile. I'll be in heaven :)

kittee said...

hey bryanna!
i have all these ingredients and usually do, so i'm gonna try this tomorrow!

xo
kittee

ace.maler said...

This was SO incredibly delicious!! Thank you so much for the recipe, I just made it and am already completely addicted. WOW.

I used firm instead of extra-firm, and it was soft enough to slather over broccoli without watering it down. I also used 1 tablespoon dark (brown rice) miso because I really had nothing else. It couldn't have made a difference though, because it was still incredible and I couldn't taste the miso at all.

I have a feeling this will be made every weekend!

Sarena Shasteen said...

Ok, this looks so good! I have to admit that I tried a "cheese" sauce before made with nutritional yeast and I could not even begin to eat it. Do you have a recommendation on a brand that is not offensive? I really want to try this one!

Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

Sarena, I think I got the balance of flavors pretty good in this spread-- it doesn't scream "yeast!" or "miso!" or "tahini!". Remember that most recipes are referring to nutritional yeast FLAKES and, because they have a greater volume than the powdered yeast, if you are using a powdered nutritional yeast such as Engevita, you need to cut the amount in half!

Red Star nutritional yeast flakes are the best, in my opinion-- get their Vegetarian Support Formula if possible because it contains B12. Anaother brand I have heard good reviews of is Kal.

Sarena Shasteen said...

Thanks Bryanna! I will definitely be giving this a try soon. I really appreciate your recommendations!

zlamushka said...

Fantastic cheese spread. Love the new design of your blog :-)

always write said...

This did not last a week in the fridge.

Because we ate it in four days.

Rumela said...

Thank you for the recipe!! The cheddary spread looks wonderful. I will try to make it when I have all the ingredients around. Looks so simple!! thank you for shearing your post.

Anonymous said...

the nutritional yeast i have always used is located in the bulk bin at your health food store. it has large flakes. you may also find it a a whole foods store.

my cat, minnie, loves licking the nutritional yeast flakes right from my palm. she cannot get enough of the stuff...

i agree, bryanna's cheddary spread will NOT last a week.

try it with macaroni and cheez....yum and yum again

vikster said...

Looks great - I'm going to make it for my sandwiches to take to the office. Would it also work on a pizza?

Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

vikster-- it's too "cheddary" for pizza. You could try using only 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast, leave out the paprika, turmeric and dry mustard, cut down on the lemon juice and alot on the miso (may need to increase the salt in this case). Maybe I'll play with that. Not sure how it would react to high heat on a pizza, though.

I have a simple "melty pizza cheeze" recipe in my book "20 Minutes to dinner'-- I'll blog that one day.

moo moo said...

Just made this and it is delicious right out of the food processor (couldn't wait until after refrigeration to taste). I used 3/4 package of Nasoya organic silken tofu from the refrigerated section. Unfortunately I didn't have onion granules so I used a small chunk of yellow onion and had to eliminate the dry mustard altogether as I don't have any. Can't wait to try this for grilled cheese and with broccoli over pasta. Thanks!!