Since going vegan, I’ve been relying heavily on cashews for making rich/cheesy/creamy dishes that traditionally call for dairy products with much satisfaction, my only qualm being that cashews are too expensive for regular use. However, a few months ago I met a young vegan who’s allergic to all kinds of tree nuts and I realized that there are so many dishes that are popular in the vegan circles that they won’t be able to eat. Imagine having to just sit there and watch people around you gobble up cheesy pizzas and creamy pasta dishes while you can’t have any of that! Even though I am yet to get a chance to cook for this person, they have definitely inspired me to try out recipes that are easy and tasty while also being nut-free!

This Vegan, Nut-free, Oil-free Cheese Sauce is made of just vegetables and coconut milk. You can add a few tablespoons of olive oil while blending the sauce for a richer taste, but I wanted to keep it oil-free as well.

Preparation time: 30 minutes, approx.

Yields around 4 cups

Ingredients:

  • 2 cup chopped potato (2 medium-sized potatoes)
  • 1 cup chopped carrot (1 medium-sized carrot)
  • 1 cup first-extract coconut milk, see notes
  • 1-2 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 heaped teaspoon mustard paste
  • 2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (ACV)
  • 2 heaped tablespoon nutritional yeast extract, see notes
  • Salt, to taste
  • Italian seasoning, to taste

Method:

  1. Pressure-cook the potato + carrot pieces with 3 cups of water for 4 whistles on high heat. Drain out the water and reserve the cooked vegetables.
  2. Blend crushed garlic, cooked vegetables and 1 cup of coconut milk until smooth and creamy. Add ACV, mustard paste, nutritional yeast extract, and salt. Blend again. Mix in spices of your choice; I like to add Italian seasoning or pizza seasoning.

Slather this sauce on pizzas, make cheesy pasta dishes/vegetable bakes, use as a sandwich spread, or serve as a creamy accompaniment to stuffed parathe!

NOTES:

  1. To order nutritional yeast extract, mail Bhupi Maru at bonappetit@auromail.net or call him at +91 9894030284 and enquire for their product list. While Bon Appetit is not a vegan enterprise, it has a variety of vegan goodies. Check it out!
  2. To make thick first extract coconut milk, soak one cup of grated fresh mature coconut in one cup of hot water for 15-20 minutes. Blend on high speed until thick and creamy. Strain using a fine-mesh sieve or cheesecloth. Reserve the milk and use the residual pulp in some other recipe. Alternatively, you can use store-bought coconut milk that comes in tetra packs/cans.