I didn’t move to California until I was 12 so I don’t have any fond childhood memories of eating at Bob’s Big Boy fast food joint, but my husband sure does. It seems as if most native Californians have stories about Bob’s this or Bob’s that; I remember someone even telling me about a college fraternity prank for stealing the mascot statue one night (I am possibly incriminating my husband here?).
So, the other night when I decided to make my own version of nut cheese after being blown away by Gena’s cashew cheese, I certainly did not intend to make veganized version of Bob’s Big Boy Roquefort Dressing, but that’s what Alan immediately declared it tasted like (with much glee, I might add).
This recipe uses the same base as the cashew cheese: nuts, lemon juice and dried herbs. I simply thinned out the cheese with some apple cider vinegar to make it a dressing. I started with walnuts and pine nuts. I then added marjoram, oregano and lemon balm, because those are the dried herbs that have very high antioxidant activity, according to Dr. Greger.
By the way, I order my dried herbs from Mountain Rose Herbs. I don’t have any special deal with them or anything, but I like that they have organic versions and seem to be a great company. I order in bulk and then satisfy my anal-retentive tendencies by putting them in glass and stainless steel containers complete with labels:
If you soaked the nuts in water for a few hours ahead of time, then you could easily make this dressing in the food processor. I used the Vitamix instead and it worked great, too. Here’s what it looks like pre-blended:
After adding the lemon juice, the mixture blended pretty easily into a perfectly fantastic nut cheese that tastes very reminiscent of a blue cheese:
You can stop here if you want and put the cheese on top of a salad or in a collard wrap:
I even served it along side my dinner last night as a topping for a baked sweet potato, steamed spinach, beans, chopped onions and chopped zucchini:
To take it to the next step for a dressing, however, you’ll need to use some apple cider vinegar to thin out the cheese a little bit. I prefer to just stir the vinegar by hand into the cheese as opposed to blending it more in the blender because it then stays a bit chunky with little bits of walnut. Personal preference.
Here’s the recipe:
Bob’s Big Boy Roquefort Dressing…Veganized
aka Vegan Blue Cheese Dressing
1 1/2 cups walnuts
1/2 cup pine nuts
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon dried marjoram (or your choice of dried herb)
1 teaspoon dried lemon balm (or your choice of dried herb)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 cloves garlic
2-4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (for thinning out cheese to make dressing)
1. If using a food processor, soak the walnuts in water for 4 hours. Drain and rinse nuts before adding to food processor. If using a high-speed blender, you do not need to soak nuts before using.
2. Combine nuts, lemon juice, dried herbs and garlic in a food processor or high-speed blender and pulse or blend on medium speed until blended but still chunky. Use a spoon to wipe down the sides and pulse again or blend again.
3. Use a spatula to spoon resulting nut cheese into a container. If you want to make the dressing, simply pour the apple cider vinegar onto the cheese and use a spoon to mix together. Start with a 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and add more until dressing reaches the desired consistency.
Here’s what the dressing looks like on a salad:
Gosh, this new technique of making nuts into nut cheeses has opened up a whole new world of vegan possibilities for me. As I eat more and more vegetables to stay healthy, I find that the flavor, texture and satiety that comes from using a nut-based dressing or topping makes all the difference. Avocados achieve the same result for me, but hey, after two years of popping avos, I need a little variety in my life.
I really hope you enjoy this new cheese and dressing, please let me know if you like it or if you have any nut cheese faves.
On another note, I had several questions from readers about how I’m adapting my food intake to lose the few pounds I gained recently. The biggest thing I’m working on right now is still working on my emotional eating behaviors. I wish this had an easy fix, but for me it has to do with my overall emotional health. In other words, happy me = less eating for comfort. A technique I’m using is called Emotional Brain Training (EBT), I introduced it in this post.
Another resource I’ve been reading about on Dr. Fuhrman’s Member Center that people are using with great success is called Shrink Yourself. If I weren’t already immeshed in EBT and having success with it, I would look into the Shrink Yourself program.
You should note, though, that I am not a health professional and I would urge anyone to seek professional counseling if you think you have an eating or mental disorder. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, but it’s very important to get the right help.
Have a fantastic weekend, everyone, and I’ll see you back here on Monday.
This is my entry for Healthy Vegan Fridays #2, click here to find out how to submit your entry!