Vegan Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Plant-based Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Over the last few attempts, I’ve found a couple of recipes that really seem to work. And this one, based off the recipe from LovingItVegan.com really seems to work amazingly well, and makes something super tasty!

Plant-Based Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Red pepper vegan cheddar cheese. Firm, slice-able and totally delicious!
Last updated July 30, 2019.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Author: Based on recipe from LovingItVegan.com. Modified by Plant-Based-Bear.com.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Raw Cashews
  • cup Water
  • 5 Tbsp Lemon Juice (More makes it extra sharp!)
  • ¼ cup Tahini
  • 1 Tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Tomato Paste or sauce
  • 2 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 Medium Red Pepper deseeded and chopped, about 3/4 cup
  • 2 ½ tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp Paprika Smoked Paprika if you like a smoked taste.
  • tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
  • ¼ cup Nutritional Yeast
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1 Tbsp Agar Agar Powder not flakes

Instructions

  • Add the cashews, 1/3 cup water, lemon juice, tahini, soy sauce, tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, red pepper, salt, paprika, cayenne pepper, dijon mustard, nutritional yeast, garlic powder and onion powder to a high-speed blender. Blend until super super smooth. Set aside.
  • Add the 1 cup of water and agar agar powder to a saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring constantly. Once boiling let it boil for about 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and pour it into the blender on top of the cheese mix.
  • Blend until smooth.
  • Working quickly, as it will start to set very fast, pour it out into plastic wrap lined small loaf pans.
  • Put it into the fridge to set, uncovered. After 20-30 minutes, remove from fridge.
  • Lift out of loaf pans by plastic wrap, wrap plastic wrap to cover cheese, and store in air-tight container, back in the fridge, or freeze for later use.

I’ve also found that if I really let it firm up, I can grate it up. It’s a kind of wet cheese grate, but does that job, and freezes well this way, too.

PBB
Hand-grated plant-based sharp cheddar.

No-Oil Air Fryer Country Potatoes

This morning I had a hankering for some good old-fashioned country potatoes. Usually, these would be fried up in a skillet, and topped with cheese and sour cream. Yeah, none of that last sentence is going to work anymore!

So, with my air fryer, I was able to make my own country potatoes, and they turned out delicious.

This “recipe” is more of a how-to method than a good measuring guide.

No-Oil Air Fryer Country Potatoes

Like any country potatoes, but plant-based, and using no oil!
Last updated Sept. 25, 2019.
Prep Time25 mins
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: breakfast, potato
Author: Plant-Based-Bear.com

Equipment

  • Air fryer

Ingredients

  • whole raw potatoes 2 medium-large potatoes is an ample serving per person
  • cold water Enough to cover potatoes in a bowl
  • Chicken-like seasoning
  • paprika Use more than you think necessary
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder
  • chili powder Just a touch.
  • ground pepper
  • other seasonings thyme, rosemary, oregano or others, as to suit
  • bell pepper diced
  • green onions diced
  • other chop-able veggies zucchini, squash, tomatoes, onions
  • salsa or ketchup
  • plant-based sour cream optional
  • plant-based shredded cheese optional

Instructions

  • Wash and dry potatoes.
  • Dice to desired size. I tend to like mine more like those you'd buy frozen, so reasonably small.
  • Soak potatoes in water for the duration of your dicing session. You may choose to drain off and rinse the potatoes a couple times, until water doesn't get cloudy with stirring.
  • Drain water from diced raw potatoes. Drain as much possible, but no need to go through extra drying steps.
  • To the bowl of potatoes, add some chicken-like seasoning. Remember this is usually pretty salty, so use accordingly.
  • Add paprika for color and flavor. Smoked paprika could work here, too. This helps give a beautiful fried color, so be generous!
  • Add onion and garlic powder to bowl, for flavor. Add other herbs and spices, as desired.
  • Stir up ingredients of the bowl, coating each potato piece with some of each ingredient. If there doesn't seem to be enough coating, add some more!
  • Depending on the size of your air fryer, spread out in the bottom of air fryer. About 1-3 inches thick seemed to work for me, but make sure plenty of air can get around all of the potatoes, and don't try to cook too many at once.
  • Cook in air fryer, for about 13-16 minutes at 400°F. Depending on how heavily you load your air fryer, you may wish to give a good stir, or shake the potatoes around about every 5 minutes.
  • While cooking your potatoes, slice, dice, and mince the bell peppers, green onions, and other veggies, trying to stick with veggies that need about the same cooking time.
  • Remove pan from air fryer and add veggies, and stir around in with potatoes.
  • Air fry for another 3+ minutes to desired crispness.
  • Serve with plant-based sour cream, salsa or ketchup, and plant-based shredded cheese, or even sprinkle some fresh diced green onions on tap!

I found that if I don’t soak my potatoes in water first, I end up with a mess that just doesn’t have that restaurant quality. But the length of the soak doesn’t seem to matter as much as just doing it, and clearing the cloudy water.

For the seasonings, use more than you think necessary or needed, except for the chicken-like seasoning. I use McKay’s Chicken Seasoning if I have any (I find that it is expensive online), but there are alternatives, and I’ve found some compelling looking products at my local Asian supermarkets (some even without oil.)

Seems that most plant-based sour cream recipes are about the same, but I’ll rehash the one I’m using at some other time. I’ve now taken the time to post my Plant-based Sour Cream recipe!

And for shredded cheese, I’ve been using my Plant-based Sharp Cheddar.

Enjoy! I know I thoroughly do, every time I make this recipe!

PBB
No-Oil Air Fryer Country Potatoes.
I’ve eaten a few bites here, to show you more of the potatoes!
The version from August 31, 2019 with onions, bell peppers, and fresh tomatoes.
No-Oil Air Fryer Country Potatoes with bell peppers and onions, and topped with Plant-based Sour Cream, Plant-based Cheddar Cheese (shredded) and some salsa, from Oct. 6, 2019.
No-Oil Whole Wheat Bread

No-Oil Whole Wheat Bread for Bread Machines

There are many bread recipes out there, and I haven’t tried them all. However, this is one I have, and I liked it alot! I’ve made it so super easy to make bread (just dump in the ingredients, and spend 5 minutes later on to knead and separate dough into two loaves, finally baking!)

On Amazon, I recently purchased a bread machine for very little money. While I like this machine (and even my first attempt was a success), the 2 lb. bread loaf dimensions seem unsuitable for making a sandwich that would fit in a regular sandwich bag, and the slice size is rather large for toast, too. Cutting in half made things too small.

2 lb. Bread Machine Bread, cut in half, and then sliced.
The size of the loaves is unruly, with a half, above, being almost too small, but the full loaf being too large.

So, I set about to solve the problem, using some solutions from others! This recipe has been modified from the original author to suit my needs! See my notes after the recipe for more information!

No-Oil Whole Wheat Bread for 2-lb. Bread Machines

Great whole wheat bread, made without oil or dairy! Intended for 2-lb. bread machines. For best results, add the ingredients in the order suggested in your machine’s manual.
Last updated Sept. 25, 2019.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Author: Based on recipe from Susan Voisin at fatfreevegan.com and modified by Plant-Based-Bear.com

Equipment

  • 2 cans from 46 oz. pineapple juice with one side cut off.
  • 2 lb bread machine

Ingredients

  • 1 ⅔ cups aquafaba also known as chick-pea broth, or water could be used.
  • 2 ⅔ cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups bread flour
  • 2 tablespoons vital wheat gluten or high gluten flour optional, but highly recommended. (If you had to, you could also substitute with more bread flour.)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt 1 ½ tsp. if water is used
  • 2 teaspoon active dry yeast

Instructions

  • Pour the aquafaba into the bread machine pan, attempting very accurate and precise measurements. A glass or clear plastic measuring cup is best, to get just up to the intended line.
  • Stir flour before measuring. Overfill measuring cup by spooning flour in, and then level off with knife before adding to bread machine pan. Don't scoop up flour with measuring cup.
  • Add the remaining ingredients. Make sure the yeast doesn’t come into contact with the liquid by placing it in a shallow dip (created with a spoon or your finger!) at the top of the ingredients.
  • Choose the dough setting on the bread machine, unless you want to bake in your bread machine, and press start.
  • If baking in the bread machine, choose whole wheat setting, and wait for the cycle to complete! Fresh bread!
  • After the initial dough program is complete, pre-heat oven to 200°F.
  • Remove dough from bread machine and place on a lightly-floured surface, knead gently a couple of times, and then split into 1-lb. balls. (I use a kitchen scale to weigh mine and split.)
  • Place dough into pineapple juice cans, lined with Teflon sheets. (See post below recipe.)
  • Place cans into 200°F oven, turning OFF the oven. Let rise for 50 minutes to 1 hr.
  • Bake at 350°F over for 40 to 50 minutes, until golden brown on top.
  • Remove cans from oven, cool slightly, and dump bread out to cool completely.

Notes

  • Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature.
  • Really do get some vital wheat gluten, or high-gluten flour.  Bob’s Red Mill “Vital Wheat Gluten” is what I’ve been using lately, but even the generic brands will do.  This really helps the bread have some sponge, and bend, instead of breaking and crumbling easily.  It’s really worth it!  I’ve also now doubled the amount of vital wheat gluten to 2 Tablespoons (and I often have more rounded Tablespoons than precise, flat ones.)
  • Bread will slice better after it’s cooled.
  • Around here, bread lasts about a week on the counter in a sealed bag.  But, it also freezes very well, or store in the refrigerator.

Bread in a can? Am I crazy? Actually, this method works very well.

Here’s what you do:

  • Purchase 2 46 oz. pineapple juice cans. Wal-Mart has them, or many grocery stores, (or any can of this size, although they seem to be becoming more rare.) I can find them for $2-3 each.
  • Use your can-opener to completely remove the top, and drink the juice, use it as a base for fruit smooties, or use it to pre-treat your fruit before dehydrating! (Bananas taste great after drying when pre-treated with the pineapple juice.)
  • Purchase some Teflon baking sheets. The link has some that I found for incredibly cheap. I use them in the bottom of ALL my baking sheets and pans now (in fact, they live in the pans, even when not in use.) These Teflon sheets easily cut to size with just scissors. I cut a flat sheet to use around the edges of my cans, and also traced the can for the bottom, and cut out a circle.
  • Simply place the 1-lb dough balls in the bottom of the cans, lined with the Teflon sheets. I don’t press it in tightly, but do help it conform to the can a bit. Let dough rise in the slightly heated oven (now turned off) to about double or more the original size, and then bake.
  • When you remove the cans from the oven after baking, the bread will just almost fall out of the can (with a bit of shaking), and there is almost no cleanup, as you can simply wipe the Teflon sheets down, and store away for the next time!

Best of all, this round bread is perfect for sandwiches, or toast, or even a plant-based “burger” patty!

PBB
“Canned” No-Oil Whole Wheat Bread for Bread Machines.
This could have baked another 5-10 minutes to get even darker, but for those in the “no-crust” crowd, these were perfect.