The following recipe is from the crew at Flying Pigs Labs—my favorite contestants at the Baltimore Vegan Mac n’ Cheese Smackdown both this year and last. Their recipe has been shared on the Washington Post and more recently on the Facebook event page for the 2017 event, courtesy of Paula Jean Ciskowski. Thank you for making such a delicious dish!
Flying Pig Labs Mac ‘n Cheese
(makes just over 7 cups of sauce)
About 1.5 recipes per 9×13 4.5 qt pan
1 cup (160g) FPL White Cheddar Cashew cheese, recipe below
1 ⅛ t salt (to taste)
¼ t pepper
1 ½ t onion powder
1 ½ t dry mustard
½ t paprika
½ t garlic powder
⅛ t cayenne
2 T nutritional yeast
3 T Go Veggie Parmesan cheese
2 T baked garlic (or omit and add a bit more garlic powder)
½ t garlic powder
2 t vegetable better than bouillon vegetable base (or 1-2 vegetable broth cubes)
6 T Earth Balance margarine
4 cup unsweetened almond milk (or probably any nondairy milk)
4oz Daiya Cheddar Cheese or other vegan smooth melting cheese
4oz Daiya Mozzerella Cheese or other vegan smooth melting cheese
1 cup chopped onions (measured after cooking)
4 cups uncooked whole wheat pasta (312g)
– Add all ingredients except onion and penne to a blender, process until smooth
– Microwave onions until soft.
– Add onions and uncooked penne to oiled baking dish
– Pour sauce into baking dish and mix
– Cover tightly with top or foil
– Bake 20 min at 400 degrees
– Stir, cover, and return to the oven to bake another 15 min.
– Stir and check pasta for al dente (or done to your liking). Cook longer if necessary.
– Taste and adjust salt and cayenne, if necessary. It should have just a little cayenne bite to accent the cheese.
– The sauce will thicken as it cools.
– Add toasted panko bread crumbs before serving.
Toasted Panko Crumbs with Basil
(I don’t usually measure these ingredients, I just wing it)
3 T Earth Balance margarine
1 ½ cups Panko bread crumbs
3T Go Veggie Parmesan cheese
¼ t salt
1/4 c chopped fresh basil (firmly packed)
Melt Earth balance in a frying pan, add panko crumbs and cook over medium heat until lightly browned, stirring often. Toss in parmesan and chopped fresh basil. Wilt the basil a bit but don’t burn it.
Flying Pig Labs White Cheddar Cashew Cheese
(¼ cup Rejuvelac (start this a few days ahead of time!)
1 ½ cups (7.5 oz) raw cashews
1⁄3 cup refined coconut oil
1 1/2 T nutritional yeast
2 T mellow white miso paste
1 t onion powder
1⁄2 t sea salt or kosher salt
1⁄2 t dry ground mustard
– Soak the nuts in enough water to cover for a minimum of 8 hours in the refrigerator. Chef Conroy says to use filtered or spring water to avoid the chlorine, I have well water so I use that.
-Drain the nuts, discarding the soaking water.
-Remove the lid from the jar of coconut oil and microwave until melted, then measure.
-Add all ingredients to a Vitamix or high powered blender or food processor. Blend until smooth (you’ll need to stop and stir, use tamper, whatever it takes to get it all smooth). Transfer to another container and leave out of direct sunlight to culture for 36-48 hours. Taste occasionally, culturing will happen faster if it is a warm house. Stop it at the sharpness you prefer. Gasses are released as it cultures, it will rise and get an airy texture. When it tastes like cheese, mix it up to remove the gases, and store in the refrigerator. It will get firm when it is cold. Roll some in chopped nuts for a fantastic cheese ball!
This makes 3 cups, scale down if you don’t want that much.
1/2 cup dry organic soft white wheat berries
filtered or spring water – DO NOT use tap water!
1 one-quart mason jar (home canning jar)
1 square of double layered cheesecloth and a lid ring or a stainless steel or plastic sprouting lid
– Ensure that your mason jar is very clean to prevent contamination of the culture.
– Place wheat berries in the mason jar and cover with cheesecloth and ring lid or sprouting lid.
– Pour water in the jar and drain a few times to rinse. Drain, and turn the jar on it’s side and shake to distribute the berries across it’s length.
– Leave the jar in indirect sunlight. Rinse and repeat a few times a day until you see little tails coming about of the berries. Two or three days will do it.
– Rinse one last time and add 3 cups of spring water or filtered water to the jar.
– Leave for one to three days (out of direct sunlight) until you see bubbles rising from the bottom of the jar when you move the jar. Taste it. It should taste a little lemony and musty.
– Drain off the rejuvelac water and discard the sprouted berries.
– Keep in the refrigerator, it must be used within a week. Once it smells sour, it can’t be used.