probiotics

Herbed Raw Boursin

 

This probiotic-rich fermented cheese tastes very much like Boursin cheese, although it's completely dairy free and actually good for you! It goes really well with flax crackers and crudites, and although it is a 3-step process, it's actually very easy to make. 

2 cups soaked cashews (at least 4 hours), drained

1/3 cup hemp seeds

1 cup warm water with 1-2 teaspoons probiotic powder

Chopped dill, chives, peppercorns

 

Step 1: In a vitamix or high-speed blender (with tamper preferably), blend soaked cashews, hemp seeds, and the water with probiotic powder until smooth*.  Remove the mixture into a nut milk bag and let ripen over a colander in a bowl, covered and with a small weight, for about 15-24 hours, or per your taste.  To speed the process, you can also place it for 1 or 2 hours on top of a dehydrator to absorb some of the heat. 

Step 2: Scoop out the mixture into a bowl, and add 1-2 tablespoons chopped dill and 3 good sized chives, minced small.   Season with a little salt and taste, and adjust the seasoning if you need to.  

Step 3: Line a mold of your choice (ramekin, a 4 inch mold with a pop-out bottom, etc.) with wax paper or plastic wrap and pour the cheese mixture in.  This recipe should be enough for 3 or 4 ramekins or two 4-inch molds. Cover with more wax paper or plastic wrap and refrigerate at least overnight to set well.  

Step 4: Flip over, remove the wrapping and decorate with crushed herbs/pink peppercorns. Keep refrigerated and enjoy!  

I love this cheese best sprinkled with herbes de provence, at the very end. It takes it to a whole new level! 

NOTE: I tend to like my cheese tart and a little more ripe, so I add about 1.5 teaspoons. Also, the longer you let it sit (or if you put it on the top of your dehydrator to absorb some of the heat that comes out) it will ripen faster.

Probiotic Raw Vanilla Coconut Yoghurt

I love playing in the kitchen and infusing my food with natural, good for you probiotics, the way they happen in nature....like making sauerkraut and kim chi from scratch, and new favorite, this vanilla coconut yoghurt. In fact, research shows that probiotics found in kim chi and sauerkraut and other ferments create much more diverse colonies and symbiotic relationship between probiotics than those found in a capsule (which are fabricated in a lab). So much so that you end up saving money if you make your own, vs. buying a probiotic bottle of pills.  

I'm in love with these frozen packs of fresh raw coconut (see below), and I bought a whole case just for this purpose: making my own yoghurt. While it's expensive, I've experienced breaking open expensive coconuts from a store and finding out that they're either purple inside, don't have enough meat, aren't fresh, or the outside is sprayed with fermaldehyde. Gross! You've ended up wasting a lot of time and having to return the coconuts anyway. This one is a no brainer: you save so much time and hassle! Plus they're frozen so they last a long time, ready to use when you need them. 

Also, here's a really good reason for making your own yoghurt: When you buy store-bought yoghurt, many times it has stabilizers and preservatives, even the good kinds. This recipe has 4 ingredients, all of which you can pronounce, and it's oh so easy & fast to make:

1 package raw coconut meat, defrosted (I love this brand)

1 cup coconut water (I prefer this one, as it's in a glass; you can also buy them individually at any health food store)

2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract

1 teaspoon probiotic powder (I use this one, but you can also break open a few probiotic capsules and give it a go)

Blend all ingredients together in a high speed blender until smooth, using the tamper to move all everything in towards the vortex. It's best to leave this overnight on a counter (if your kitchen is cool, otherwise, it will turn sour fast), or in the fridge. This helps the bacteria to proliferate (multiply) and create a probiotic-rich food that's not only creamy, sweet and delicious, but so very good for your micro biome. I love adding organic strawberries and cacao nibs to it and make it a morning breakfast. Enjoy!