It seems like the main barrier that prevents many vegetarians from making the leap to veganism is their love of cheese. After a little over a year of vegan cooking, I can see their point. Cheese is hard to duplicate in vegan form. Especially bubbly, stringy pizza cheese! For some, Daiya is the answer to their faux cheese prayers, but I can't get past its funky smell. And I've been pretty lazy about trying the other vegan cheeses out there (although I've heard good things about Follow Your Heart and should really pick some up.)
Lately I've been missing cheese more than ever, so I decided to try my hand at making it myself, with the help of the Uncheese Cookbook.
First I made the Mostarella, a vegan take on buffalo mozzarella. It took only minutes to prepare. After firming up somewhat in the refrigerator overnight, it had a creamy, spreadable consistency.
I made bruschette caprese -- toasted baguette slices topped with a layer of Mostarella, a slice of heirloom tomato, and some basil from my garden. To make a meal out of it, I served it with garlic-marinated green olives and some broccoli salad (recipe from Quick and Easy Vegan Celebrations.) The result was heavenly. The dairy cheese wasn't missed at all!
We also had good results using the Mostarella in grilled cheese sandwiches. Melty and creamy, yum.
I also made the Fabuloso Kale Casserole. As opposed to some casseroles where everything is mixed together, this one has two distinct layers.
For the bottom layer, you make a cheezy sauce and stir it into cooked brown rice. Then you add a layer of sauteed kale, mushrooms, red onion, and carrots. I couldn't get enough of this casserole. The bottom layer tasted like the cheesiest, creamiest risotto ever, but the veggies made it seem healthy. With a few splashes of Tabasco, it's a perfect all-in-one meal.
My cheese cravings still haven't been completely satisfied, so I'll be making more Uncheeses soon!
What's your favorite vegan cheese?