|Vegan, nut-based cheeses by Kite Hill.|
Vegan cheese is not an oxymoron, and it's not new news. But it's confirmed: vegan cheese is the new black:
- My introduction to non-dairy cheese came many moons ago when I discovered Jo Stepniak's breakthrough The Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook probably before most of you were even a twinkle in your parents' eyes.
- More recently, Miyoko Shinner caused a sensation with her elegant DIY manual Artisan Vegan Cheese [Check out my review here].
- Just a few weeks ago, the famous vegan cheese makers Dr. Cow, opened their first flagship fromagerie in Brooklyn.
A few months back, Whole Foods asked me to sample nut-based Kite Hill Vegan Cheeses. They are – quite aptly – sold in the cheese department at Whole Foods, nestled among all the dairy cheeses. They are packaged like traditional dairy cheeses, in round thin wooden boxes. They look like traditional dairy cheeses. They are made like traditional dairy cheeses – using superior ingredients, French cheese-making equipment, and enzymes. But they are vegan – made from a proprietary nut milk and a specially developed, lactose-free culture.
|Cassucio – a soft, delicate plant-based cheese|
I tried the Cassucio and the White Adler. Their web site and press releases suggest all sorts of mouth-watering pairings, but I sampled these in the throes of F-stop's hospitalization, so there was no time or inclination for getting fancy. I simply nibbled on the cheeses with bread, wine and olives, and that suited me just fine.
Cassucio is a moist, delicate cheese – similar to a feta but not quite as strong. The texture was, like feta, ever-so-slightly crumbly.
|If you like Brie or Camembert, you'll love White Adler. It's my favorite,.|
If Camembert and Brie had a vegan love child, it would be White Adler. It's a rich, creamy, slightly stinky cheese – heaven! Encased in a soft, delicate rind, and overflowing with earthy, woody undertones, White Adler is a classic "fool an omnivore" victual. You would never guess this was crafted from nuts. And really, it doesn't matter because as my blog tag line states, "Good food is good food." This is great food.
You can find Kite Hill cheeses at select Whole Foods across the US. As of now, availability is largely concentrated on the right and left coasts, so Midwesterners will have to DIY for now. Which ones are you going to try first?