Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Vegan Pimento "Cheese" Spread

As soon as I spied this recipe at An Edible Mosaic it went into my must-make folder. My current fascination with vegan cooking is still going strong and anything that claimed to taste like a "cheese" spread falls squarely into that category. But other shiney objects jumped into my view and this recipe wallowed in the pile patiently waiting for me to make it. Finally, the day came and I have to tell you it was spectacular!

Similar to so many of the vegan items coming out of my kitchen lately, I sampled this out at work on unsuspecting omnivores. "This is GOOD!" and "Que Rico!" were the first responses to the tastes. While dairy-style pimento cheese spread is not something I have eaten in years, I can attest that there is definitely an umami cheese flavor in this spread, courtesy of the nutritional yeast flakes, which do the job beautifully.

Allowing the spread to age at least 24 hours in the refrigerator will improve the flavor greatly, so that the flavors really mellow into each other and the consistency firms up. Serve it with a hearty cracker or toasted slices of baguette, it's a great appetizer or part of a meal if you add a nice big bowl of salad.

Vegan Pimento "Cheese" Spread (from An Edible Mosaic)
(makes 2 cups)

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 roasted red bell pepper
2 teaspoon soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
1/2 cup blanched almonds
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat; add the onion and cook until softened and starting to brown in places, about 5 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more, stirring constantly.  Cool completely. Add the onion garlic mixture and all remaining ingredients to a food processor and process until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Chill and serve with crackers or crudités.


Recipes currently inspiring me:

Cheddar, Beer and Mustard Pull-Apart Bread at Smitten Kitchen
Peanut Butter Cup Pie at Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice
Venison Medallions with Gin and Juniper at Hunter Angler Gardener Cook

1 comment:

Reeni said...

This sounds delicious Kirsten! Lately I am in love with nutritional yeast! xoxo