Homemade Vegan Ricotta Cheese

Makes about 1 1/4 cups

Music Pairing: One Foot by The Mynabirds

In case you’re curious why I call for filtered water here, it’s because I notice the tap water at my apartment in Maryland has a very chlorinated scent to it. I find that very off-putting, and use this kishu charcoal filter for our drinking water. If I were still in NYC, I’d use regular tap water with no worries about the taste (or safety).

Before you ask, I have no idea how this will hold up to cooking into a recipe (i.e. baked ziti, pizza, lasagna). I have a good feeling about it though, and will let you all know if, or when, I give it a try. Please let me know in the comments if you do, too.

1 cup cashews

1/3 cup filtered water

Freshly squeezed juice of one lemon

2 tablespoons grapeseed oil

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Splash of agave (optional)

Add the cashews to a bowl, and cover with enough water to rise 1-inch above the cashews. Let them soak for at least 4 hours, or overnight (I found 6 hours to be just right, which also tells you something about how much sleep I actually get daily).

Drain the cashews, discarding the water. Add the nuts, filtered water, lemon juice, oil, and salt to a food processor. Pulse until smooth and creamy, but not fully pureed (you want some texture to mimick the tiny curds in fresh ricotta). Taste, and season with more salt and the agave, if you like.

The cheese is ready to eat immediately. Otherwise store in a covered, glass container in the fridge for up to three days.