Cashew Paté

This is my attempt at replicating Meet Market's (R.I.P.) Cashew "cheese". I'm calling it paté, though, because unlike RFD's Cashew Cheese, which uses Agar to replicate the texture of cheese (meltable and shreddable)- this one remains the texture that it is when you make it, which is like a thick hummus (or paté).

I used a photo of the packaging that I found on Quarrygirl's site to get the ingredients, which I varied by one ingredient. They list a probiotic last, which I didn't have or really have the inclination to investigate. I think that it's in there probably for one, because Jamie Lee Curtis has spread the probiotic gospel to the point where people want to be partaking in it. And two, because raw cashews could be hard to digest (one of my cookbooks mentions this and the remedy to it, which is soaking them). I also added a hint of onion powder b/c it tasted a bit bland.

So, you are supposed to soak raw cashews for about 12 hours, when recipes tell you to do it. Others never mention it. So, I soaked for 4 hours. Not out of strategy, but out of timing more than anything. Four hours was all the time that I had until I wanted to eat this up.

This is the closest that I've gotten to replicating the awesomeness that was Meet Market's recipe. If you are in L.A. and would like to try the real deal, Flore has the same owners and uses it in their East Sider tacos, which it's amazing in (see my knock off HERE). Here you go (you will need a food processor):

1 cup Raw Cashews, soaked 4+ hours (MUST be raw and unsalted- you will regret swapping this out with salted
2 T Nutritional Yeast
3/4 t Sea Salt
1/2t Paprika
1/4 cup Soy milk
1/4 t Onion Powder

Soak cashews in water, covering the nuts entirely with the water and covering the bowl with a dishtowel to keep out dust and cats and things.

When the nuts are done soaking, drain them and let them air dry for 15 minutes or so. Put the nuts into the food processor and grind them into a fine powder (paste, if they have moisture in them still). Add the other ingredients and blend very, very well. Scoop out and serve on bagel chips, with tortilla chips or in tacos.

RFD Nachos

Oh. My. Gosh. Okay- if you're in Los Angeles, just go to Real Food Daily and order the nachos. They are beyond. The best mix of flavors that ever I have had in a nacho- and I consider myself a connoisseur. To make these at home is quite a lot of effort, but like all recipes from RFD's cookbook- it's well worth it.

There are five recipes within this recipe; The Cashew Cheese, the Black Beans, the Pico, the Guac and the Sour Cream. I mod'ed these out b/c I had made their burritos or something which required making the ranchero sauce and the spanish rice. So- these particular nachos have; The Spanish Rice, The Guac, plain Black Beans, Cashew Cheese and the Ranchero Sauce. Amazing!

I have to talk about this cheese too. I was addicted to Meet Market's cashew cheese, but the damn restaurant closed. Also, theirs is more of a spread that's the consistency of hummus or something. It was delicious and I'll still try to replicate it, but RFD's is in a universe of its own. For one, it melts. When you first make it, it's a sauce (see the pic). It has phenomenal flavor as well. But then the magic part happens after its cooked. Any cheese sauce that's left over can be poured into a tupperware and refrigerated. Hours later- you have a block of f-ing cheese that you can grate to put on top of tacos, burritos, etc. Can you even believe that? It's like some magic substance (real cheese). It blows soy and a certain name brand oil based faux cheese out of the water. It's the absolute best, and I shall never go back to any other cheese substitute. I cannot sing it's praises any more, it's the best!

Wraps- Starring Meet Market's Cashew Cheese

Okay, I'm mildly obsessed with this Meet Market Cashew "Cheese" (I would like to rename it to Cashew Awesome Spread since it's really pretty dissimilar to cheese). Anyway- I saw a recipe to make the stuff for anyone whose not in L.A. on Whole Food's iphone app. I'm not gonna bother though, since I can just go get bona fide guaranteed greatness over at the Market. Also, I have no food processor.

Anyway- this is another easy peasy thrown together sammie made special by the Cashew Awesome Spread. You'll need:

Tomatoes, chopped
Cashew Awesome Spread
Avocado, sliced
Trader Joe's Baked Tofu- Savory flavor (1/2-1 brick per wrap depending on appetite and tortilla size)

Slice each wad of tofu into 4 slices width-wise (like in my BLTA club) and cook in a wee bit of oil in a frying pan making sure both sides get some golden-y goodness on them. Spread cashew cheese on 2/3 of the tortilla (anywhere that'll be the inside once it's wrapped). Blot tofu, and slice lengthwise (giving you 8 slices per brick). Use 4-8 slices per wrap and layer over cashew cheese. Add lettuce, tomatoes and avocado.

Wrap up, take a bite, let your eyes roll back into your head and be filled with gratitude that you get to eat such great food.