Saturday, December 29, 2012

Gluten Free & Vegan Mac and Cheeze!

One of the things you crave when you eliminate dairy from your diet is…CHEESE. The comfort and richness of cheese that just warms the belly and soul.  However, for people with Ulcerative Colitis, dairy is a big “no no” as it inhibits healing of the intestinal lining. But enough about that…lets talk CHEEZE!!
This cheeze gets its creamy and satisfying texture from ground up cashews and…butternut squash!! You roast them and grind them up in the food processor! Sounds super crazy and not very likely to be a winner, but oooh, quite the contrary.  This was a two thumbs up recipe. It had that deep belly satisfaction that shoots warmth through your entire body. The texture was much like…dare I say…Stouffers?
mac and cheeze pleaze!
This fabulous recipe I found from Oh She Glows. In her recipe, she uses Earth Balance, or margarine. I’m trying to stay clear of processed, unhealthy ingredients like margarine, so I used her cashew based cheeze sauce found here and then added in the roasted butternut squash and almond milk. This was seriously so yummy.
I toasted up some GF bread crumbs with parsley and 1t EVOO. mmmmm
Enjoy this treat for your taste buds and tummy!
Chef's tip: Breaking down a butternut squash can be tricky - and dangerous - if you're not careful! And the key is a good knife! They say that the most dangerous tool in the kitchen is a dull knife! 
To break down a butternut squash, I cut off the top and tail, to create a flat surface, so it's stable. I stand it on its end, and take my knife and peel it. Once peeled, I carefully slice it in half lengthwise (still standing on its end) and then dice it up. The knife I use is a Wusthof knife. A chef's knife is definitely an investment, but if you're going to be doing some cooking, it is absolutely worth it. You don't need to buy a whole set of amazing knives - I suggest just a chef's knife and a pairing knife. Here's the knife I have and LOVE:

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