This review is about a “Cultured Nut Product” made by Miyoko’s Kitchen, a Californian company. It’s a vegan alternative to cheese in a way, but by NO means is exclusively for vegans, everyone should try these delectable, tangy, and creamy rounds of greatness. Miyoko’s cultured nut products are a true artisanal food, made with love, passion and determination by Miyoko Schinner. I read that she embarked on a mission to recreate the flavours and textures of dairy cheese, in an organic and dairy-free way, as she became vegan and missed cheese and now has a great team bringing this brand to life!
I cite this off the Miyoko’s website, as it’s so interesting to me how much labels bother the government, but in the wrong way! “Because our product isn’t made from dairy, in the state of California, we can’t call it cheese. Years ago, soy milk manufacturers faced a similar situation, but eventually won a legal battle to use the word milk. As a small company just hitting the ground, we aren’t quite prepared to take on the state or federal governments, so we’ve decided simply to go with the flow, call our creations cultured nut products, and have fun with it! After all, we’re a team of cultured nuts ourselves.”
It took Miyoko many years to figure out the perfect formulas and when she did, she published a cookbook called Artisan Vegan Cheese, which she hoped would inspire others to make their own. It is NOT simple to do this, and since the launch of Miyoko’s Kitchen, she can barely keep up to the incredible demand. My family was originally going to try it when we visited California (see my reviews from that trip here), but they were all sold out. It is not yet available in Canada, but luckily I have cousins who live in Michigan and we shipped a variety to them that we enjoyed together on our visit. We all liked them, even though we all eat very differently!
We tried and LOVED the following organic, vegan and gluten-free “cultured nut” rounds:
No. 2: Double Cream Sundried Tomato Garlic This one was almost like a sundried tomato spread in cheese wheel form, that was absolutely delicious. I think this would be so good warm over steamed broccoli or crispy baked kale.
No. 3: High Sierra Rustic Alpine This was the most plain of the bunch, and the least attractive in colour but truly awesmazing and great warmed and melted. I could eat this everyday!
No. 5: Mt. Vesuvius Black Ash This automatically was the coolest one since it was covered in black ash (see picture below), and even though my cousins were slightly skeptical, they really liked the flavour too. If you are serving guests, this is sure to be a conversation starter!
No. 6: French Style Winter Truffle If you like the taste of earthy mushrooms, this is the one for you! I loved the truffled cheese from Matthew Kenney’s restaurant in LA, and this one ranks along with that one!
No. 8: Aged English Smoked Farmhouse This one was my favourite because I loved the smoky flavour, but also thought the texture was perfect – firm, yet still soft and creamy enough to spread.
I’m only disappointed that I didn’t get to try all of them, and have to wait for my next US visit (or someone to bring them to Toronto for me! anyone??) to enjoy these again. Unwrap Miyoko’s Kitchen “cultured nut products”, place on a cool platter, add marinated, raw and roasted veggies, some fruit and crackers and you will impress others and enjoy yourselves immensely! If you entertain or create your own cheese boards, or charcuterie platters, these will be a welcome and awesmazing addition to your snack or meal. Also, check their website for great recipe ideas, I want to try them ALL!
Thanks to Miyoko’s Kitchen for creating an incredible organic, plant-based, real food product that is great looking and totally awesmazing!