Published by Ashley Palmer.

Looking for a meal that is sure to impress your guests? Look no further than this recipe for marinated portobellos filled with cashew cheese and topped with basil pesto.

It may look and sound fancy, but trust me when I say: It’s easy if you prepare the cashew cheese and pesto ahead of time. Alternatively, you can use pre-made vegan ricotta cheese and store-bought dairy-free pesto. Enjoy!

Marinated Portobellos With Cashew Cheese and Pesto

For the Mushrooms:
1/2 Tbsp./tsp. vegetable oil
1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari
1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp. dried basil
6 portobello mushrooms, stems removed

  • Combine all ingredients, except for the mushrooms, in a bowl and mix well.
  • Coat each portobello with the mixture, and then place on a plate. Pour the remaining mixture over the mushrooms. Set aside until ready to bake.
  • Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  • Line a baking sheet with tin foil, place the mushrooms on the pan, and bake for 10 minutes. Flip and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
  • Remove mushrooms from the oven, fill with cashew cheese, and top with pesto (recipes below). Bake for an additional 5 minutes.
  • Serve immediately.

Makes 3 servings

For the Cashew Cheese:
1 1/2 cups raw cashews
Cold water sufficient to cover the cashews by 2 inches
1/3 cup water (more if needed)
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
2 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp. sea salt

  • Place the cashews in a medium bowl. Add the cold water and let soak for 2 hours. Drain.
  • Combine the cashews, water, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, garlic, and salt in a food processor and blend, scraping down the sides occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until very smooth. 
  • Transfer to a small bowl. Cover and let stand at room temperature for at least 1 day and up to 2 days. Refrigerate until ready to use, or for up to 5 days.

For the Basil Pesto:
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1/3 cup pine nuts
3 cups fresh basil leaves, firmly packed
1/2–3/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup soy Parmesan cheese

  • Place the garlic and pine nuts in a food processor and process until minced. Add the basil, salt, and pepper and process until the mixture is ground into a paste.
  • With the machine running, pour the oil into the feed tube in a slow, steady stream until well blended. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the soy cheese.
  • Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

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