This simple cashew cream can be used to replace heavy cream in certain recipes. Use in pastas sauces, soups, curries, with potatoes, or even mixed into scrambled tofu (trust me). You can make it as thick or as runny as you would like (refer to recipe notes), depending on your preference or where you’ll want to use it; however, I’ve offered a basic version of a heavy (high-fat) cream.
- 150g (1 cup) raw cashews, soaked for at least 1 hour or up to 12 hours, drained and rinsed
- 250ml (1 cup) water
- 2 tbsp. nutritional yeast
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- Place all the ingredients into a blender and blend until completely smooth, using a spatula to scrape down the sides as necessary. Use immediately, or transfer into an airtight container for up to 5 days.
• For most recipes (not all), I recommend soaking cashews with warm water and a pinch of salt. This is because:
(1) Soaking makes them softer, which makes blending easier and smoother, especially if you do not have a high speed blender.
(2) Soaking for at least 4 hours helps to break down the phytic acid (a compound that binds with the minerals iron and zinc, making the nut less bio-available). This breaking down of the phytic acid allows for better absorption of minerals.
(3) Soaking for at least 4 hours, especially with a pinch of salt, can neutralize enzyme inhibitors (a protective agent that prevents germination), allowing for easier digestion.
• Although it may seem a little runny when it has just been blended, keep in mind that this cream does thicken in the fridge. To know exactly how thick or thin you like or need your cream to be, you may have to play around with it once or twice. To make this a lighter cream, you will have to lower the total fat content by either reducing the amount of cashews or increasing the amount of liquid (water in this case).
• Also keep in mind that if you choose not to soak your cashews, you may require about a tablespoon or two of extra water, as cashews absorb some of the water when soaked. I recommend starting with less, and adding more accordingly. It is easier to thin out this cream than it is to thicken it back up.