herb cheese

Herbed Hemp-Pine Nut Spread

Are you looking for a creamy cheese alternative? This hemp-pine nut spread hits the mark with its creamy texture and and herby goodness.

This can be used in just about every way you would use a dairy cheese spread, but it makes a stunning presentation when it is layered with pesto and tomato or olive tapenade, or with cranberry relish for the holidays. It can be used to stuff mushroom caps or top crisp bread.

It is also used to make a cream sauce for green beans or potatoes.

Herbed Hemp – Pine Nut Spread

creamy cheese alternative that can be layered with pesto, top a cracker or fill a mushroom cap. Get creative!
Prep Time15 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: hemp seeds, pine nuts
Author: Chef Kim

Equipment

  • food processor

Ingredients

  • 1 cup hemp seeds
  • ½ cup pine nuts may substitute macadamia or cashews
  • 1 T nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp of white miso can be omitted – add ½ t salt
  • 1 tsp white balsamic vinegar
  • water
  • 1 tsp sage
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp rosemary

Instructions

  • Combine everything, except the herbs, in a food processor or blender and process until a thick paste forms.
  • Start slowly with the water by adding 3 tablespoons initially and adding more if needed. When a creamy consistency is reached, add the herbs and pulse to combine. Serve this as a spread or dip.
  • This can be layered with pesto, olive tapenade or cranberry relish to make a festive presentation.

Make Your Own Plant Milk & Coffee Bar

I enjoy checking out plant-based cafes while I’m traveling internationally, on a road trip or even just surfing online.  Recently I found a cold-pressed juice bar offering different plant-based milks and I took it as a challenge to make my own variety to have on hand while my daughter was home for a month.

I wanted to have milk available for her daily green smoothies, but rather than sticking with plain nut/seed milks, we decided to make a  variety of flavors which turned out to be delicious. Coffee is a favorite, so incorporating coffee flavors into the milk variety was a no-brainer.  We tried these flavor combinations: Plain Almond, Vanilla Almond-Cashew-Hemp, Matcha latte,  Coffee Latte, Mocha, and Cacao milk. All Yummy!  My next batch will incorporate some herbs and roots, like ginger, turmeric, cardamom, pepper, lavender and more. It really can be an endless flavor adventure. So why not give it a try.

Combining nuts, seeds and even soaked grains, will also yield different tasting milks with different nutrient profiles. Here’s an oat milk recipe. Remember, variety is good, it allows your taste buds to develop and mature, but it also provides the body with a variety of nutrients, all important for building new and healthy cells.

Making milk is an easy process. By making a large batch, dividing and mixing in desired flavors,  you can have a variety on hand for the week.

I’ll walk you through what we did…

  • Soak 2 cups of almonds in pure water overnight.
  • In the morning, drain, rinse and add 1/2 of the nuts to a blender along with 4 cups of water and two pitted dates.  Blend on high for one minute.
  • Use a sieve or nut milk bag to filter the milk into a large jar, but keep the pulp.  Repeat with the remaining nuts, making two batches. (The reserved nut pulp can be saved and used in baking or blending with dates and spices to make raw cookies.)
  • Once your plain milk is made, decide how much you want to keep plain and use for the next couple days. It can be used in sauces, soups and smoothies.
  • We wanted to make  three cups of the milk into 1 cup of creamer and 4 cups of coffee latte. So we put 3 cups of plain milk back into blender, added 1/2 cup of cashews, 2 tablespoons of hemp seed and 1 teaspoon of vanilla and blended for a minute until smooth cream resulted. We poured off one cup into a jar to use as a creamer when desired. Poured the rest of the vanilla milk into a large jar and then added 2 cups of strong coffee into that same jar to make coffee latte.
  • With the remaining  plain almond milk, we divided that into three containers and added Matcha tea powder to one and blended that for a Matcha Latte. To another jar, we added an equal amount of coffee and a tablespoon of raw cacao powder and blended it to make a Mocha Latte.  To the final jar, 1-2 tablespoons of cacao powder and one more date blended to make a chocolate milk. All the milks can be enjoyed cold or warmed gently.
  • Be creative and add some spices and herbs but most of all, don’t feel deprived because you can create so much delicious goodness with nut and seed milks.
  • I really like green milk! Blend the plain milk with greens powder or fresh mixture of greens and ginger or turmeric. This is a great alternative and easy way to get a few extra greens in your day.
  • Other posts for different kinds of milk include this turmeric post and berry oat milk.