Turmeric Cashew Cheese + Beet Appetizer
Updated: Oct 18, 2019
You guys, I surprised myself that this cashew cheese turned out so delicious and satisfying. It's creamy and tasty with a little salty and lots of umami, not to mention the plant powered ingredients.
Cashews are a great source of plant-based protein with five grams per ounce. Cashews also contain fiber, iron, magnesium and vitamin B6.
Oregano has immense immune-enhancing properties and has been shown to fight virus and bacteria-related infections, going head-to-head with antibiotics against MRSA. That’s some power! Oregano leaves contain more than 40 different phytonutrient compounds including polyphenols, flavonoids and anthocyanins (also found in green tea, dark chocolate and blueberries, respectively). These phytonutrients (or antioxidants) protect against internal and external toxins, fighting diseases like cancer, heart disease and inflammation.
Turmeric contains curcumin, the compound that gives it its beautiful bright hue, which is also responsible for the spice's medicinal properties. It contains natural agents that block the formation of beta-amyloid, the substance responsible for the plaque that is seen in Alzheimer's disease. It also contains more than two dozen anti-inflammatory compounds, including six different compounds that inhibit the enzymes that promote pain, swelling and inflammation. Studies are showing that turmeric supplements may even replace pain medication through its pain-relieving results. There are more than 200 studies showing the anti-cancer effects of either the turmeric or curcumin extract as being just as effective as pharmaceuticals to help interfere with several important molecular pathways involved in cancer development and growth.
Miso is a fermented food that contains healing bacteria for the gut. Since it comes from soy, it also contains all nine essential amino acids making it a complete plant-based protein. Finally, it's been shown in some studies to prevent hormone-related cancers due to its isoflavones.
From giving athletes an edge by increasing oxygen capacity and delaying fatigue to lowering blood pressure and fighting inflammation, beets are a true superfood. They contain betaine, a nutrient that helps protects cells, proteins, and enzymes from environmental stress. Beets are high in immune-boosting vitamin C, fiber, and essential minerals like potassium (essential for healthy nerve and muscle function) and manganese (which is good for your bones, liver, kidneys, and pancreas).
You can make the beets and eat them by themselves as chips or use them in place of bread and add a dollop of cashew cheese for a fun and healthy appetizer or snack. There are two key methods to getting the beets crispy:
1. salting them first, letting them sit for 15-20 minutes then draining the water
2. slicing them super thin (easiest with a slicer)
3-5 beets, scrubbed clean (no need to peel)
2-3 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper for the beets
Cashew Cheese Ingredients
3/4 cup cashews, soaked for 4-6 hours or overnight
1 Tbsp mellow white miso
2 Tbsp water
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp smoked paprika powder
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp salt (more to taste, if you'd like - I ended up adding another 1/8 tsp)
pepper to taste
Optional for layering
arugula or other green
How to make the beets
Preheat over to 375 degrees.
Thinly slice beets with a mandolin (or a sharp knife), getting them as consistently thin as possible. They should curl a little when cut. In a large bowl, add beets, olive oil and a light layer of salt so that each beet has been salted. Stir well. Let sit for 15-20 minutes then drain the water (or add it to juice!).
Place parchment paper or spray baking sheet with olive oil. Arrange in a single layer, making sure the slices aren’t touching
Bake for 15-20 minutes or until crispy and slightly brown. Be sure to watch closely past the 15 minute mark as they can burn quickly.
How to make the cashew cheese
Soak cashews overnight for for 4-6 hours (just make sure water is completely covering the cashews).
In a small bowl, add the miso and 2 Tbsp water. With a spoon or small spatula, blend the miso in the water until completely dissolved.
In a food processor, add the cashews, miso, apple cider vinegar, paprika, turmeric, oregano, garlic and 1/4 tsp salt. Blend until creamy.
Taste and add extra salt (if necessary) plus black pepper.
Make your turmeric cashew cheese beet appetizer
Layer all of the beets on your favorite serving platter.
Add a leaf or two of arugula or your favorite green.
With a tablespoon, add a dollop of cashew cheese.
Sprinkle with a little more smoked paprika.
Add kimchi, kraut, cilantro or micro greens on top for more deliciousness and nutrient power.