Pages

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Raw Vegan Hemp Boursin with Garlic & Fine Herbs


If a food could be louche, it would have to be rich, buttery Boursin: the soft, triple-cream, crumbly cheese spread that is so deliciously smooth and flavorful, one might manage to forget it is a heavily processed commercial milk product, just a few degrees of separation away from Philly.

I’ve had a serious crush on Boursin cheese—the garlic and fine herbs variety—since first being introduced in high school by a certain Melba Toast. Of course, we all were forced to part ways decades ago, citing irreconcilable health differences. But I’ve remained true in my long-standing desire to create a raw vegan version of the classic spread.

Undaunted by several false attempts, I’ve finally figured out the elusive ingredient that makes the recipe work: hemp seeds! Creamy, golden hemp seeds (rather than my usual seed cheese suspects: pumpkin, sunflower, cashew, macadamia) are the secret.

Along with a sublime blend of fresh garlic, lemon juice, and herbes de Provence, hemp seeds make my Raw Vegan Hemp Boursin with Garlic & Fine Herbs taste as divinely decadent as the original.


Enjoy Raw Vegan Hemp Boursin on 100% whole grain bread or crackers, sandwiched between spinach leaves, nestled in romaine, or stuffed into crunchy celery ribs. For sweeter pleasures, consider serving as a dip or spread with sliced Honeycrisp apples. Yum.


Raw Vegan Hemp Boursin with Garlic & Fine Herbs

This recipe makes one cup of finished Hemp Boursin.

1 ½ cups organic hulled hemp seeds
1 small clove of garlic, minced
½ teaspoon Himalayan pink salt or sea salt
1 Tablespoon Herbes de Provence
1 Tablespoon nutritional yeast
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 to 4 Tablespoons cold water

In a food processor fitted with the S-blade, add hemp seeds, garlic, salt, herbes de Provence and nutritional yeast, and pulse into a crumbly meal. Add lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of water; then process again until the contents begin to form a ball. Use a rubber spatula to scrape what rises up the sides back down into the mixture. Continue adding water one tablespoon at a time, and process the cheese after each addition until you see a color change: from green-gold to ivory white. At this point, only add more water if needed to reach desired, smooth consistency. Be careful not too add too much water at once, or the spread will suddenly turn liquid, in which case it can be used as salad dressing and you’ll have to start again. Store covered Hemp Boursin in refrigerator for up to one week. Freezes well for those who prefer to work in larger batches.


Note: The beautiful 100% whole grain sourdough bread featured in this post was handmade by Dorie Goldman of The Backyard Bakery, who freshly mills her own flour from local and organic grains.

Having purchased my first loaf today at the indoor Amherst Farmers Market, I feel like I won a prize! Moist, chewy and packed with seeds, this dense Danish Rye miraculously manages to be as light as it is hearty. My new favorite bread, hands down.

6 comments:

diana allen, ms, cns said...

VARIATION: For even creamier mouth-feel, try adding a teaspoon of raw coconut oil, or "cream top" from canned coconut milk. (Thanks to my top-secret recipe tester, who shared her findings in this private message):

"It is a winner! I made two batches and put a dab of extra thick coconut milk as I wanted to balance out the great zest the herbs/garlic gave it...it was right on the edge of being too sweet, but it gave it cheese-creaminess that was fab."

Matthew Prineas said...

Hempseed -- who knew? Made a batch of this incredibly rich spread yesterday. Hard to believe this is vegan! Thanks for this brilliant idea.

diana allen, ms, cns said...

You're welcome, Matthew, and thank you for stopping by eat to evolve! Hempseeds are amazing, indeed...so versatile, nutritious and creamy-delicious. Glad you are enjoying the Vegan Hemp Boursin recipe :)

Michelle said...

Thank you so much!!! I have dairy issues and often have to bring my own cheese to family gatherings. Most vegan recipes are made with nuts but my nephew has a life threatening nut allergy so nuts are contraband at family gatherings! finally something to please everyone!

Michelle said...

Thank you so much!!! I have dairy issues and often have to bring my own cheese to family gatherings. Most vegan recipes are made with nuts but my nephew has a life threatening nut allergy so nuts are contraband at family gatherings! finally something to please everyone!

diana allen, ms, cns said...

Hi Michelle! I'm glad you like this recipe - it really is so creamy and delicious. Enjoy!