Makes 1 small block.
This dairy-free cheese has a deliciously salty and savoury taste with a rich, buttery texture from walnuts. The walnuts also give it a distinct but ever-so-mild flavour that makes it unlike any other cheese. Even if you’re not a fan of walnuts, I encourage you to buy some high-quality raw walnuts from the refrigerated section in your local health food store.
Walnuts also offer high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, which your body needs to protect your brain, maintain a healthy immune system, balance moods, and reduce pain and inflammation in your body. Walnuts are also a good source of vitamins B6 and E as well as minerals like magnesium and potassium.
This recipe takes only about 10 minutes of actual preparation time, but the flavours are superb when the walnuts are allowed to culture for a day. Of course, you can culture it for less time if you simply can’t wait to enjoy your next batch. It is delicious on its own, or you can cut it into disks and serve it with your favourite crackers, grapes, or figs. Alternatively, spread it on freshly toasted bread, and savour the rich flavour as it slowly melts from the warmth. Mmmm.
You can use just about any type of preferred container you want as a cheese mould, thereby giving your cheeses a wide range of shapes and sizes. There are professional cheese moulds available, but there is no need to use them with these types of cheeses, as most have small holes in them that simply don’t work well with the cheeses in The Cultured Cook. Simple Pyrex, glass, or ceramic bowls will work fine.
To help you choose the correct size of mould to use, here’s what I typically use:
But don’t feel confined to use only round moulds. If you have square or rectangular containers that hold about the same amount, then feel free to use them.
In a small glass or ceramic bowl, combine walnuts and water. Empty the contents of the probiotic capsules (discarding the empty capsule shells) or the probiotic powder into the bowl, and stir to combine. Cover and let sit in a warm, undisturbed spot for two days.
In a small frying pan over low to medium heat, sauteu0301 olive oil and thyme until sprigs are lightly crisped (about 3 to 5 minutes). Remove from heat. Once cool, pull thyme leaves off the sprigs, and sprinkle across the base of a small glass dish.
Pour the walnut mixture into a blender, add salt and coconut oil, and blend until completely smooth; pour into the glass dish coated in thyme leaves. Refrigerate, uncovered, until set (about 4 hours). Gently remove the cheese from the glass bowl, and serve upside down so the thyme leaves are on the top of the cheese. Garnish with thyme sprigs, if desired. Walnut Thyme Cheese keeps in the refrigerator, covered, for about 1 month.
This recipe is part of the Delicious Fermented Foods collection.
While sablefish’s texture and fat content stand up admirably to the heat of the grill, this firm fish is also delicious poached. For this recipe, sablefish’s luxurious taste is combined with a light fragrant broth of lemongrass and ginger punctuated with the heat of Thai chili. Sustainability status Sablefish, also known as butterfish or black cod, is a rich and satisfying fish, plentiful in omega-3s and sourced sustainably from the Pacific Northwest. Skin and bones Sablefish has large pin bones. Ideally, your fishmonger will remove them, but if not, before you begin, locate them along the fish’s centreline and, using a pair of needle nose pliers, grasp them firmly to remove. You can leave the skin on for this recipe, which may help the fish hold together a little better while cooking, but it can be tricky to peel the skin away from the cooked fish and discard before plating. I opted to remove the skin first and simply keep a close eye on the cooking time, being careful to remove the fish from the poaching liquid before it flakes apart.
These mildly spiced salmon tacos served with sweet and spicy pumpkin seeds will bring a party together. Make a small quantity of salmon go further when you pair it with a fresh red cabbage slaw featuring citrus and cilantro. Drizzled with some bright lime yogurt, the flavours come together perfectly. Sustainability status Wild salmon from the Pacific Northwest and Alaska are considered among the most sustainable, as the fishery is subject to limited harvests. With salmon stocks in decline, supporting managed fisheries such as these can help maintain populations into the future. That may also mean eating salmon less often than we do now. Salmon is a favourite Salmon is the most popular variety of fish in Canada and the second most popular in the US.
B12-rich mussels are a very good and economical source of protein and iron. Steamed mussels are a classic way to enjoy seafood—and so is this rich, aromatic broth of tomato, fennel, and saffron. Be sure to allow saffron to fully infuse to get the full flavour benefit, and finish off the dish with the fragrant fennel fronds. Sustainability status Farmed mussels are considered highly sustainable due to their low impacts on the environment. They are easy to harvest, require no fertilizer or fresh water, and don’t need to be fed externally, as they get all their nutritional requirements from their marine environment. Mussel prep Selection: Look for mussels with shiny, tightly closed shells that smell of the sea. If shells are slightly open, give them a tap. Live mussels will close immediately. Storage: Keep mussels in the fridge in a shallow pan laid on top of ice. Keep them out of water and cover with a damp cloth. Ideally, consume on the day you buy them, but within two days. They need to breathe, so never keep them in a sealed plastic bag. Cleanup: In addition to being sustainable, farmed mussels tend to require less cleaning than wild mussels. Most of the fibrous “beards” that mussels use to grip solid surfaces will have been removed before sale. But if a few remain, they’re easily dispatched: grasp the beard with your thumb and forefinger and pull it toward the hinge of the mussel and give it a tug. Afterward, give mussels a quick rinse and scrub away any areas of mud or seaweed, which, with farmed mussels, will require minimal work.
The delicate flavour of shrimp is highlighted with just a touch of lemon and a hint of mustard, while radish and celery give some fresh crunch to this dish. Eat it in lettuce cups, on top of greens, or served on whole grain bread for a filling snack. Sustainability status Both wild and farmed shrimp can be sustainable depending on where they’re caught and how they’re raised. See our article “Sea Change” for more information about choosing ethical shrimp.