It seems like every vegan blogger and their mother posted recipes for cashew-based eggnog this year. I love cashew nuts, I really do, but as a person allergic to several other tree nuts–it just doesn’t feel festive to ostracize others with food allergies. I’m striving this year (perhaps this is my new year’s resolution) to eliminate all allergen-producing ingredients from my recipes. Plus, cashews can’t be truly paleo (or sustainable) considering the processing they go through.
*Disclaimer: Cashew-based “creamy” things i.e. cashew cheez, cashew-based sauces, cashew milk, etc. are all things I have made in the past and one hundred percent advocate over dairy milk for both ethical and health-minded reasons. From a purely anthropological, evolutionary, and otherwise scientific standpoint, dairy products are made from secretions of the creature called the cow that was artificially selected from its bovine ancestor Bos Taurus…meant for its tortured and often-killed-young-for-veal spawn, the baby cow. So if cashews get anyone off dairy, I am currently and forever will be a fan.
On that note, without further ado, here is (in my opinion) the best vegan eggnog alternative I’ve ever tried (trust me, make this once and you’ll never buy store-bought vegan eggnog i.e. Silk soy ever again).
*Second disclaimer: I’d sincerely rather you purchase a store-bought vegan version over dairy/egg-based eggnog, however :)
Cashew-Less, Soy-Free Vegan Eggnog
Makes 2-3 Servings
1 15 oz. can of full-fat coconut milk
2 cups water
5-6 medjool dates, pitted *note: make sure they are pitted before blending, as sometimes even in a package or bulk bin of “pitted dates” a few pits or pit fragments remain. I learned this the hard way (resulted in a broken Cuisinart years ago)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. Himalayan pink salt
1 tsp ground nutmeg (freshly grated is best)
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
a dash of ground cloves (less than 1/8 tsp)
1/4 tsp xanthan gum (use only if you want a very creamy or thicker result)
1 Tbsp to 1/2oz spiced rum (optional, per serving *tip, let guests adjust this according to preference)
In a blender or food processor, puree coconut milk with the dates. If your blender does not allow for full pulverization of the dates (there should be no “chunks”), use a sieve or strainer over a large bowl. I highly recommend doing this anyway, even if you think the dates are completely puréed.
Return the liquid coconut milk/date mixture to the blender or food processor. Add all other ingredients, minus the optional rum (it would be best to have family/friends/guests specify the quantity of rum they prefer…not to mention you may decide to share this with people who don’t drink or who can’t…so it’s also pertinent to leave it out from the mix unless all guests are of age), and blend until smooth.
Happy New Year, Paleoveganista :)
*and Happy Birthday, Dad!