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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:57 pm 
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Wears Pleather Undies

Joined: Tue Dec 04, 2012 11:04 am
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Okay, I'll try that then. Hopefully my oven is insulated enough to hold the temp fairly constant overnight. It's an in-the-wall one, which I usually hate, but it might just prove handy for this. :)

Thanks for the advice! I'll keep you posted.


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 11:50 pm 
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No, your yogurt should set up just fine wrapped in a towel on your kitchen counter. Your cultures are probably too old. One of my students did a science fair experiment testing for active cultures in yogurt, and the numbers dropped over time.

Don't waste your milk by using old yogurt to try to culture it. It will end up spoiling.

Do you have any probiotic powder or capsules? If so, you can use about 1 tsp of that as a starter. Or if you're not allergic or opposed, you can use some dairy yogurt (fresh, not past the expiration date.) You only need 1 TBS. Or bum some from a neighbor or friend?

Once you have your own started, keep making batches before they spoil, so you won't need to buy more starter...

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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2012 2:34 am 
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Started culturing a batch of the Monterey jack tonight, one of the melty recipes I'd overlooked. I'm excited. I foresee nachos and grilled cheeses.

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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:43 am 
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Wears Pleather Undies

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alinaspencil wrote:
No, your yogurt should set up just fine wrapped in a towel on your kitchen counter. Your cultures are probably too old. One of my students did a science fair experiment testing for active cultures in yogurt, and the numbers dropped over time.

Don't waste your milk by using old yogurt to try to culture it. It will end up spoiling.

Do you have any probiotic powder or capsules? If so, you can use about 1 tsp of that as a starter. Or if you're not allergic or opposed, you can use some dairy yogurt (fresh, not past the expiration date.) You only need 1 TBS. Or bum some from a neighbor or friend?

Once you have your own started, keep making batches before they spoil, so you won't need to buy more starter...


I think you may be correct, Alinaspencil. I did as Lululuv suggested and left this new batch of yogurt in a warm oven overnight, and when I pulled them out this morning I believe the temperature was right on, but it was still liquid. So my cultures must be done for. :/

From what I've seen, probiotic capsules are kind of pricey (especially if I just need one teaspoon to start a batch), but maybe I'm not looking in the right place. I think there might be a store about an hour's drive from us that may carry the nondairy yogurt. Maybe I'll give them a call today and see if they have it. Does anybody know of anyplace that sells vegan yogurt online? I've checked Vegan Essentials, and it doesn't look like they do. But maybe Pangea?

Either way, I'll get my hands on some sooner or later and will give it another go. I refuse to admit defeat on this! :)


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2012 9:30 am 
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Huffs Nutritional Yeast
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It's unclear to me from what you've said whether the milk isn't culturing at all or whether it's just not thickening.
Does it taste tangy and yoghurty? If it does then it may be as simple as adding something to thicken it. Almond milk yoghurt will not usually set as firmly as soy or dairy yoghurt. Also, yoghurt will thicken further when it goes in the fridge.

If you are using unsweetened milk try adding a small amount of sugar, perhaps a tablespoon, to feed the cultures.

It may be useful for you to know you can freeze yoghurt to use as a starter for at least a month.


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2012 9:45 am 
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Wears Pleather Undies

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Loomi wrote:
It's unclear to me from what you've said whether the milk isn't culturing at all or whether it's just not thickening.
Does it taste tangy and yoghurty? If it does then it may be as simple as adding something to thicken it. Almond milk yoghurt will not usually set as firmly as soy or dairy yoghurt. Also, yoghurt will thicken further when it goes in the fridge.

If you are using unsweetened milk try adding a small amount of sugar, perhaps a tablespoon, to feed the cultures.

It may be useful for you to know you can freeze yoghurt to use as a starter for at least a month.


Loomi, I don't believe it tastes tangy/yogurty at all. It tastes like almond milk mixed with cashews. I hadn't thought about adding the sugar. That might be a handy trick. Nor had I thought about freezing it, although I don't know why. Maybe I'll try the next batch with soymilk and see if that makes a difference.

Thanks for the tips! I'll keep you all posted.


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2012 2:44 am 
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Hearts James Cromwell
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The soft gruyere came out great, it very much tastes like real cheese! Lacto bf agress. Pretty easy to make. And a fairly strong flavor, which is good when adding to foods or thinning into sauces.

I just cultured some cashew cheese for the brie which I'm going to whiz up today.

I actually halved the recipes and it seems to be working without any problem. Later when I discover my favorites I'll be sure to make a full batch.

I've been dreaming about the mascarpone, just stumbled upon a decadent chocolate-cherry-mascarpone cake recipe which would be a sinch to veganize with the mascarpone from this book.


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2012 7:50 am 
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how do store the yoghurt while it culture ? do you leave 24 - 48 hours in the fridge or outside ?


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2012 8:53 am 
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Wears Pleather Undies

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syrius wrote:
how do store the yoghurt while it culture ? do you leave 24 - 48 hours in the fridge or outside ?


I was leaving it overnight either on my kitchen counter (where the ambient temperature is about 75 degrees F.) or in my warm oven. I hadn't tried it any longer than about 9-10 hours simply because the book suggests 6-8 maximum.

I did find a place about an hour away that I can easily get to, which carries nondairy yogurt. So I'll be making a trip down there soon to get some more as starter. In the meantime, I'll just stick to the Rejuvelac cheeses. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 8:30 am 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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I'm attempting the basic cashew cheese today, but I'm a bit worried about my blender. It's not a Vita-Mix or anything (if only I had brought that with me from the states!). If I have a regular blender, will that be okay? Or should I try using a food processor? I have a Cuisinart. Which is better for the cheese?


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 8:39 am 
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pickledtreats wrote:
I'm attempting the basic cashew cheese today, but I'm a bit worried about my blender. It's not a Vita-Mix or anything (if only I had brought that with me from the states!). If I have a regular blender, will that be okay? Or should I try using a food processor? I have a Cuisinart. Which is better for the cheese?

I don't have a Vita-Mix, either. Mine is a decent Cuisinart, and it does just fine blending up the cheeses. However, it does require some patience as the process is much slower. But I always soak the cashews for as long as possible to soften them, and that helps a ton. Also, chopping the softened nuts in a food processor prior to blending will help immensely. Also, when I'm blending, I stop it often so I can stir it around. That way, it's blending the same tiny amount of cheese over and over again. Hope this helps. Good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 8:43 am 
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Wears Pleather Undies

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Whoops, what I meant is that by stirring the mixture in the blender, it will not be blending the same tiny bit of cheese over and over again. That's what I get when I try to post a reply on my phone. :P


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 9:49 am 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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Thanks! I'll give it a go ;)


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 3:47 pm 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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Yikes. I definitely do not recommend giving it a go with a regular blender. I soaked the cashews for 12 hours, but the blender couldn't handle it. I even added more rejuvelac than called for and it wouldn't blend. I ended up saving a bit to experiment with, but it's very crunchy/grainy. I suppose I'll have to it this cheesemaking on hold until I get a high speed blender. If I feel like risking the disappointment again, I'll try the idea of pre-chopping the nuts in the food processor before blending, but that seems like such a mess. :/

How many of you all here are using high speed blenders?


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 3:55 pm 
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I'm using a regular, cheap blender (actually, free- my mum got it from one of those rewards point programs and gave it to me) and I haven't had a problem. I stop and scrape the sides and stir it around a few times and it always turns out great. I did need to add the optional oil to one of the recipes (gouda, maybe?) to get it to blend better, which I'd wanted to avoid, but that's been the only 'issue'.

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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:02 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 26, 2010 12:38 pm
Posts: 60
Location: Berkeley
i know my old osterizer couldn't handle it unless i only made 1/3 C. at a time and it took forever and would get pretty warm (probably not good). i don't think the parm requires much cashew-blending and it's really good. also the smoked provolone only requires a bit of cashews and it's also deeeeeelicious.

i know it's expensive but i bought my vitamix in august and have used it almost every day since (just had some yummy cream of spinach soup - organic spinach was on sale at Berkeley Bowl!).

pickledtreats wrote:
Yikes. I definitely do not recommend giving it a go with a regular blender. I soaked the cashews for 12 hours, but the blender couldn't handle it. I even added more rejuvelac than called for and it wouldn't blend. I ended up saving a bit to experiment with, but it's very crunchy/grainy. I suppose I'll have to it this cheesemaking on hold until I get a high speed blender. If I feel like risking the disappointment again, I'll try the idea of pre-chopping the nuts in the food processor before blending, but that seems like such a mess. :/

How many of you all here are using high speed blenders?


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:23 pm 
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pickledtreats wrote:
Yikes. I definitely do not recommend giving it a go with a regular blender. I soaked the cashews for 12 hours, but the blender couldn't handle it. I even added more rejuvelac than called for and it wouldn't blend. I ended up saving a bit to experiment with, but it's very crunchy/grainy. I suppose I'll have to it this cheesemaking on hold until I get a high speed blender. If I feel like risking the disappointment again, I'll try the idea of pre-chopping the nuts in the food processor before blending, but that seems like such a mess. :/

How many of you all here are using high speed blenders?

Have you tried it with an immersion blender? I have a vitamix and it does not have it's equal when it comes to blended creaminess, but my regular Braun immersion blender does a pretty good job too. Just takes a really long time. Your foodprocessor might also be able to get the job done if you let it run long enough. Blenders often don't do very well processing pasty substances, especially if they are not very strong. Foodprocessors are better at that. You can make nutbutters and hummus in most foodprocessors, but not in most normal blenders.

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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:29 pm 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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I'm going to try some soaked cashews in my Cuisinart processor tomorrow. I think the thing about "regular/cheap" blenders is the unpredictable and varying quality - they can surprise you, but my experience has often been negative. I miss my Vita-Mix! I have an immersion blender, so I might give that a go, but it's also a low-end plastic version :/

Where did you buy your vitamix in the NL?


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:59 pm 
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I got mine from this webshop: http://www.marmelot.com/marmelot/juicer ... anguage=nl

Even more crazy expensive than they are in the US, but they are adjusted to the correct electricity for use in NL and there are no additional costs from delivery or customs.

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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:00 am 
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So, quick question about the sharp cheddar recipe on page 14. I've had it culturing for about 36 hours now, and when I checked on it tonight it seems to have "risen" a little bit (similar to bread). I noticed air pockets in the cheese around the edge of the glass bowl it's in, and I decided to stir it and noticed the air pockets were all the way through the cheese, making the texture similar to whipped butter or whipped cream cheese. Is this normal? I tasted a little bit of it and it tasted very tangy and sharp, but not rancid. Anybody else have this happen to their cheddar? Should I be concerned?

Thanks in advance! :)


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 3:14 am 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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Cornelie wrote:
I got mine from this webshop: http://www.marmelot.com/marmelot/juicer ... anguage=nl

Even more crazy expensive than they are in the US, but they are adjusted to the correct electricity for use in NL and there are no additional costs from delivery or customs.


To be honest, if I were to buy a new blender I'd probably go for a blendtec, but I need to find a European place to buy that. I used my mom's vitamin a ton in the states, so I know how awesome it is! Just need to save up ;)


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 3:38 am 
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pickledtreats wrote:
Cornelie wrote:
I got mine from this webshop: http://www.marmelot.com/marmelot/juicer ... anguage=nl

Even more crazy expensive than they are in the US, but they are adjusted to the correct electricity for use in NL and there are no additional costs from delivery or customs.


To be honest, if I were to buy a new blender I'd probably go for a blendtec, but I need to find a European place to buy that. I used my mom's vitamin a ton in the states, so I know how awesome it is! Just need to save up ;)

There are several options for buying a blendtec here:
http://www.blendtec.nl/index.php?page=s ... 3godmTUARA
http://www.blenderstore.nl/product/1493 ... 3god81oApw

and a few more. Just Google 'blendtec kopen'

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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 3:40 am 
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ReadingVegan wrote:
So, quick question about the sharp cheddar recipe on page 14. I've had it culturing for about 36 hours now, and when I checked on it tonight it seems to have "risen" a little bit (similar to bread). I noticed air pockets in the cheese around the edge of the glass bowl it's in, and I decided to stir it and noticed the air pockets were all the way through the cheese, making the texture similar to whipped butter or whipped cream cheese. Is this normal? I tasted a little bit of it and it tasted very tangy and sharp, but not rancid. Anybody else have this happen to their cheddar? Should I be concerned?

That's normal. I've had it happen too. The cheese was fine.

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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 5:15 am 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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Update: Even though I couldn't get the cheese to blend and I was left with a creamy mix with lots of unbroken cashew pieces, I scooped out a bit to culture just to see if my rejuvelac was working. Overnight and it already has a sour/buttermilky scent to it! I tasted it and it doesn't really taste like cheese yet, but it smells like it.

So there's a plus. My rejuvelac worked. Now to get the cashews blended...


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 Post subject: Re: Artisan Vegan Cheese
PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 6:06 am 
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Hearts James Cromwell
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I have a regular food processor/blender combination (Kenwood) and did struggle a bit to get the cashews blended. I've tried the food processor part before for other recipes with soaked cashews and they never blended completely. Now I've been using the blender part and I've gotten smooth cheese. It does take forever, I'd say at least a dozen 30-sec intervals with scraping down the sides and mixing with a spoon in between. I also soak the cashews sometimes for even 24 hours beforehand. It looks hopeless in the beginning but you have to be persistent!

My carrageenan arrived a few days ago, now to try some meltables! The gouda's on my to-do list also...

Btw, the brie was fantastic. I coated half of it with lemon pepper seasoning, yum! Next time I'll just add a tad bit more salt to the cheese.


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