Last year I made one of the best discoveries in my vegan life – this vegan macaroni and cheese recipe. It really changed our lives and our cooking. You see, nutritional yeast is not available in Bialystok and we’ve given up on ordering it. We use it up so fast, and it is not cheap. I was just convinced that faux cheese was not for me, until that wonderful recipe flowed into my inbox.
The first time, I made it to the letter, but I was frustrated with the measurements, as I was left with a bit of a potato and carrot at the end. The next time I wanted to make it, we didn’t have cashews, so I improvised and threw in sunflower seeds. Sitting here writing this now, I think adding a teaspoon of two of roasted sesame seeds wouldn’t hurt and it’d add a nice flavor. My version is lower in fat, because I skipped on the margarine, and no one has noticed this adjustment. Don’t worry about perfect measurements or what medium is for a potato – it will turn out.
There are many ways to tweak this, add sesame seeds as I mentioned above, add some paprika, increase or reduce the mustard, garlic or lemon juice to adjust to your liking.
The basic idea of this recipe is that the carrot, potato and cashews are the bone of what makes this cheese saucy, the rest is what creates the flavor – with the exception of turmeric, which is mostly there for color.
As far as what to pair it with, so far we’ve poured it over various types of casseroles, served it with veggies or tortilla chips, spread it on bread, used on burgers that were a bit dry, added it on homemade pizza. I think you get the idea. Last night, I poured it over some steamed broccoli – it was delicious!Ingredients 1 medium onion 1 medium carrot 2 medium potatoes about 2 cups water ½ cup non-dairy milk (I use homemade oat milk) 2 tsp. corn starch (or potato starch) 5-8 cloves of garlic 1 tsp. turmeric powder ⅛ tsp. cayenne pepper ½ tsp. salt ½ tsp. black pepper 1-2 tsp. mustard ¾ cup cashews (or unsalted sunflower seeds) juice of ½ lemon
1. In a saucepan, add onion, carrot, potatoes and water (add just enough water to cover the veggies). Bring to a boil. Cover the pan and simmer for about 15 minutes, until the vegetables are soft.
2. In a blender, process the rest of the ingredients. Add the vegetables and cooking water and blend until smooth.
3. Taste and adjust the seasonings accordingly.
Makes about 3-4 cups of cheeze sauce.