Being vegan, I would be morally opposed to beating a dead horse. But I’m so excited about my latest discovery in cashew cream that I’m posting yet another recipe on the topic. I’m even working with a few restaurants that specialize in steak and fish so that they can provide an amazing vegan alternative to the butter and cream sauce that is so delicious (but unhealthy!). Cashew cream has no cholesterol, lactose or gluten, is high in fiber and protein, and contains none of the traditional cream concerns in unhealthy fat, or antibiotics and hormones present in non-organic dairy products.

Cashew cream is so delicious, easy and quick to prepare, you’ll find yourself reworking all of your favorite recipes to include it.

Soak the cashews in water for several hours. I put mine out in the morning, and they were ready for dinner, though less time would be ok. You can tell by looking at them when they are done. They absorb the water and turn white. Rinse them and place them in blender. Cover with water and puree for one minute.

Chop a clove (or so) of garlic (and if you don’t understand why you need to use fresh, click here and watch a video that will change the way you cook), sweet onion, pepper, fresh peas (either chopped sugar snap or remove the skins from the unedible pod variety). Add a bit of water and sauté with Italian spices. I used about 1 tsp each of parsley, oregano, basil, thyme, red pepper, black pepper and sea salt.

Chop fresh mint leaves and tomatoes, and add them when veggies are almost done. Keeping them as raw as possible preserves the enzymes, phytochemcials and flavor that can be lost when over-cooked.Prepare pasta of choice according to package directions, or make your own if you want to get crazy. I cooked 16 oz of gluten free elbow macaroni.

Add 2 cups of the cashew cream to the sauté (hopefully, you’re using a large skillet!). Whatever is left, save and use within three days. I like to go big or go home, so I prepare an entire pound of cashew cream, and we eat like kings at every meal. It can also be sweetened and added to baked fruit. (It can also be stored in the freezer for up to six months. I recommend splitting it into 2 cup servings for easy, future use!)

If you use a typical measuring cup to transfer the cream, use the same to add an additional 2 cups of liquid. This will “rinse” all the cream sticking to the sides and prevent loss of valuable cashews! I use water to keep this as light as possible, but if you want to keep it ridiculously rich, use coconut, rice or soy milk or a veggie broth.

Add 3 tbsp of nutritional yeast flakes and 2 tsp of ground mustard. This provides the cheesy flavor. Mix thoroughly and bring back to a boil. Remove from heat. You can add more if you prefer a more pungent flavor. (I do!–4 tbsp/3 tsp is my combo of choice.)

Serve over the pasta. Prepare for tears of gratitude and an extra mile to your exercise regime tomorrow.

Add salt and black pepper to taste.

It’s that easy…