I took one for the Vegan MoFo team with this post, folks. Yep, it’s another vegan “cheese” product. Nope. Wait. Cheddar flavoured soy protein product. Doesn’t that sound amazing? Deep breath. And here we go.
Now, I suppose that vegan cheese qualifies as an acquired taste and I suspect that there exists a potential for my taste buds to adapt and come to appreciate the pungent and er, robust flavour that most vegan cheeses boast. But, why would I put myself through such heartache and sorrow for a product so devoid of nutrients and so full of other stuff? Seriously! Look!
Fine. I get it. People loooooove cheese. They totally want to marry it and make tiny cheese babies with it. And even once you are firmly ensconced in your new vegan life, you don’t forget. I know this! And you know I heart nostalgia (see yesterday’s yogurt love fest or the trip down memory lane I took riding my mom’s macaroni casserole). It is understandable to miss cheese, especially since it’s been reported that cheese possesses addictive qualities, but vegan cheese does not contain casein (which is the cheese crack) or much protein, calcium or any nutrient to speak of, so why do we subject our beautiful bodies to all this sodium, fat and weird-tastedness, I ask? Oh! You want the ooey gooey meltieness!
Other than Daiya, which is tasty, but also nutritionally defunct, I have yet to encounter a vegan cheese that really melts. Earth Island Vegan Gourmet Cheddar did not. It became kind of sweaty and crumbly and smelly, like an out of shape guy at the gym for too long, but that’s about it.
Maybe I’m being too harsh. I’m afraid I was biased by the slimy texture and potent aroma that assaulted me upon opening the package. How’s this for objectivity: my sweet innocent Daiya lovin’ 2 year old ate a piece with a super strange look on her face and said, “Thanks for the cheese, Momma. More water? Now?” Thanks is a very positive word, right?
Sigh. If we never mucked with cow babies’ milk in the first place, we would never of had cheese to miss and we would not be trying to emulate something that we shouldn’t be eating anyway. Yeah, I went a little political there for a wee sec. I hate vegan cheese that much. But if you need it, I suppose Earth Island Vegan Gourmet Cheddar is not the worst you could do. My main complaint is the pungent flavour, so maybe try the Mozzarella and report back. I would love to know what everybody else thinks about vegan cheese–I’m sooooo nosy!