Dairy Free Chèvre (Goat Cheese). (Gluten/Grain/Egg Free + Keto & Vegan)
YALL!! Im SO EXCITED about this Dairy Free Chèvre!! The texture is SPOT ON and this cheese is easy to make. No fermenting needed. You throw it together- stick it in the fridge and then add whatever flavors you want. (I came up with 2 flavors for you- but feel free to do your own thing too!)
Truth be told the flavor of goat cheese is really unique and is hard to duplicate exactly but I think this cheese is pretty darn close. Especially with the extra flavors added! I’m not even a big goat cheese lover in general but this cheese I could eat every single day.
So- lets talk Tofu types. There are so many brands and you’ll also see : Silky, Firm, Extra firm etc. I have discovered that the firmness name they give the tofu means almost nothing..that texture varies so much from brand to brand!! Which is ANNOYING. For this recipe you need a really firm tofu.. I bought 3 brands to test things out and only one was actually really firm (and it wasn't even labeled as extra firm! oy!)
So.. when you go to the store..study all the tofu available. What you want (and NEED) for this recipe is the driest/firmest square of tofu available. If you can find Hodo Organic Firm tofu it is the best! The less liquid and the more firm.. the more like feta it will be. If its watering you’re going to end up with a soft cream cheese texture and not a goat cheese that you can roll into a log. *IF that happens..its not the end of the world. Just stir whatever flavors you want into the softer goat cheese and call it a day. It will still taste really great.
A few hours before making the goat cheese- take the tofu out of the fridge and press as much water out as you can!! (Or stick it in the tofu press) Let it come to room temperature too!
Once a lot of the water is pressed out- and its room temp (you can speed that process up by sticking it in the microwave for 30 seconds to warm it up!) …you are ready to go!! The actual prep to make this cheese takes a whopping 5 minutes. (For a shortcut you can use THIS TOFU PRESS machine)
To make this cheese I had the best results using my vitamix blender using the tamper! A twister jar on the Blendtec would work well too. If you don’t have these options- the next best thing would be a food processor! There isn’t a ton of liquid in the recipe- but getting the goat cheese totally whipped up and creamy is the key to success here!
**Make sure you use the type of coconut oil that gets hard when it’s cold! Not the oil that stays liquid no matter the temperature! The oil getting firm in the fridge is what makes this recipe work! **
*Pre-soak your cashews for 30-60 minutes to soften them. Then Dry them off completely!!
Dairy Free Chèvre (Goat Cheese) Base
(Recipe yields 2 cups of cheese)
10 oz Firm (and Dry) Tofu
1/2 Cup Refined Coconut Oil
1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
1/2 Tsp Salt
1/2 Cup Pre-soaked and Towel Dried Raw Unsalted Cashews.
Place your cashews in water and let them sit for 30 minutes or longer . Prep your Tofu- get as much of the water out as possible.
Place the tofu, Refined Coconut Oil. Lemon Juice, Salt and Cashews into a blender or food processor (use the tamper on your blender if you have one!) See notes above**. Process until totally smooth and creamy (And Fluffy!)
Using a spatula- scrape all of the whipped feta into a sealed Tupperware container. Stick in the fridge. In about 4-6 hours or longer. After this point it will be ready to shape into a goat cheese log!
Cherry Honey Walnut
1 cup of the goat cheese base.
Salt and Pepper to taste
2 tsp Honey
Handful of dried cherries and walnuts
Finely Chop the Cherries and Walnuts - put them on a plate.
Mix into the goat cheese the honey, salt and pepper.
Place the goat cheese on a piece of parchment and carefully fold it into the round shape. To get the shape totally perfect I then gently rolled it on my countertop. Which gets a little bit messy but..anything for perfection! :) Once its in the right shape roll it in the chopped cherries and walnuts on the plate. Wrap in ceran wrap and stick In the fridge another 6-8 hours. It will get harder as it chills! Store in the fridge for 1-2 weeks.
Garlic Black Pepper Chive
1 Cup prepared Goat Cheese
salt and pepper to taste
2 Tbsp finely chopped Chives (Plus a little extra for the outside)
1/2 Tsp Garlic
Finely Chop the Chives.
Stir the chives, garlic and salt and pepper into the cheese.
Place the goat cheese on a piece of parchment and carefully fold it into the round shape. To get the shape totally perfect I then gently rolled it on my countertop. Which gets a little bit messy but..anything for perfection! :) Once its in the right shape roll it in a little extra chopped chives. Wrap in ceran wrap and stick In the fridge another 6-8 hours. It will get harder as it chills! Store in the fridge for 1-2 weeks.
Additional Flavor Ideas:
The only “rule” with this that you have to keep in mind is not to add a lot of liquid to the recipe..as that will make the cheese too wet and soft to roll into a log (but again if you dont care about the shape then do whatever your heart desires). 2 tsp was the Max amount I could get away with to make a log..so try to keep it to that or less. When a bit more liquid is added it reminds me a LOT of flavored cream cheese!
Thyme and Truffle oil :add the oil to the cheese and roll in thyme)
Honey Fig Pistachio :Add the honey and some salt to the cheese - then roll in chopped figs and pistachios
Cranberry Candied Pecan: add 2 tsp of honey and salt to the cheese. Then roll in chopped dried cranberries and chopped candied pecans.
Basil Sun-dried tomato: Chop sundried tomatoes and add it to the cheese with salt and pepper. Then roll in freshly minced basil.
Everything bagel: Add a little salt and pepper to the cream cheese (and any other spices you wish) then roll in everything bagel seasoning.