Alex has been experimenting with vegan cheeses over the last couple of months, using different nuts, flavourings and thickeners. And this almond lemon cheese is an absolute winner!
It’s tangy and satisfying, and makes a great sandwich. You can eat it straight away, but if you keep it a couple of days the texture firms up and it can be grated. So good on a pizza!
100 g almonds (skin on), blanched for 5 minutes and drained
100 ml cold water
juice of 2 lemons
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp lactic acid or 1/2 tsp vinegar
2 tsp agar
50 ml water
30 g tapioca flour
Put the blanched almonds, 100 ml cold water, lemon juice, salt and lactic acid in a blender (the higher powered the better!), and blend until all of the ingredients have amalgamated and formed an almost smooth paste.
Fold in the tapioca flour, making sure it’s all incorporated.
Heat the 50 ml of water in a small saucepan on a low heat and whisk in the agar. Keep whisking until it forms a thick gel. Turn the heat up a little.
Tip the almond mixture into the agar and beat like fury until it thickens, goes glossy, and comes away from the sides of the pan.
Tip into a suitable mold, we use a tupperware type of pot, 12 x 7 x 6 cm. Cool as quickly as you can, it will firm up.
It can be eaten straight away, it’s delicious, but the flavour develops and the texture improves if you store it.
To do this, turn the cheese out of the mold, wrap in kitchen paper and store in an airtight tub. Change the paper every day, and it will last at least 4 days.
By A. and E.