This fermented beetroot cashew spread is flavoured with dill and cumin and is the perfect condiment to any sandwich, savoury bowl or cheese platter. The process is simple and the result a gut-loving delight.
After harvesting an abundance of beetroots from my garden this summer I have been looking for any way to use them up. We have been adding beetroot to just about anything we can, and this fermented cashew cheese was the perfect condiment to be beet-ified! This recipe was adapted from my much loved fermented cashew cheese, which is a great recipe to start with.
What you will need to get started
- A blender- this is essential. I use a high-speed blender to get the fermented beetroot cashew spread extra creamy, however a low speed blender will be ok (it just will be more chunky)
- A fermenting crock or jar- I love to use etc Kilner ones, but anything that you can create an airtight seal with will be great.
- Raw cashews
- Raw beetroot
- Sauerkraut brine (my preference) or your preferred starter such as homemade kombucha or kefir, apple cider vinegar (see below) or probiotics.
- Fresh dill
- Ground cumin
An update on using apple cider vinegar as the starter culture
I have successfully used this brand of apple cider vinegar (ACV) many times to ferment the cashews, but after a few reader reviews using apple cider vinegar I need to note that not everyone has been as successful.
To get the best results using ACV ensure that:
- Your bottle has not been opened for many months, as this may mean the bacteria are less viable
- That you are using unpasteurised ACV with ‘the mother’.
- Before adding the vinegar to your ferment gently roll the bottle to spread the sediment at the bottom and ensure you get some of the mother into your ferment.
- You give your ferment extra time. I find 12-24 hours is enough when using sauerkraut brine however many readers have needed 72 hours+ before seeing their ferment start to work. So long as you are using an airtight jar OR using the olive oil layer this is totally ok.
Update. I did a comparison between fermenting with sauerkraut brine and apple cider vinegar. I fermented 2 jars at the same time, using the same amount of starter. Here is what I found;
- The sauerkraut brine took 48 hours to ferment. There were a-lot of bubbles and rise, the taste was sour, cheesy and delicious.
- The apple cider vinegar took 1 week to achieve the same results. While there were only a few bubbles and little rise after 1 week of fermenting I was able to achieve the same flavour.
If you’re after more fermenting recipes you might like
- Easy fermented cashew cheese
- Beetroot ginger sauerkraut
- Pistachio cranberry cashew cheese log
- Sweet pickled cucumbers
We hope you love this gut friendly fermented beetroot dip as much as we do. If you make it I would love a comment or review below- I especially love reading your feedback and try to always respond.
This easy fermented dip is the perfect gut-friendly addition to any meal- it is tangy, earthy and herby, and makes a great dip for a cheese platter, a spread on a sandwich or a condiment to a savoury bowl.
- 3 cups raw cashews
- 1 1/2 tsp good quality salt, divided
- 1 medium-large beetroot, washed trimmed, peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 Tbsp unpasteurised sauerkraut brine OR homemade kombucha starter OR unpasteurised apple cider vinegar (ACV), with ‘the mother (please see blog notes if using ACV).
- 1/3 – 1/2 cup filtered water (or spring water) for blending (see notes)
- 2 –4 Tbsp fresh, chopped dill
- 1/2 – 1 tsp ground cumin
- Soak your cashews in filtered water and 1 tsp salt for 4-12 hours
- Drain and rinse the nuts and add into your blender with the beetroot, remaining salt and sauerkraut brine and water. NOTE: if you want a sweeter final product add the beetroot after you’ve fermented your cashews. Fermenting the beetroot will take out the sweetness and much of the flavour, so be mindful of this.
- Blend until completely smooth- this can take quite a while and you should ensure your mixture doesn’t get too hot, you might need to blend in 1 minute increments. Take the time to make sure its super smooth and don’t be afraid to use your tamper to get things going.
- Put the blended mixture into a clean glass or ceramic jar. Take time to do this, ideally creating a clean layer of cashew mixture. Clean off any mixture that sits on the rim or sides of the jar (to prevent mould growing). Screw the lid on tightly- if your jar is airtight it is best to use one with an air lock, or burp daily (unscrew the lid daily to release built up gas). If you don’t have a jar with a lid, or an airtight lid, you can simply cover with a cheesecloth (this method is totally ok but the success rate is not as high).
Note: You don’t need to sterilise your jar- though you’ll never regret doing so. I use a Kilner jar, and simply wash under hot water using my hand (allowing to air dry). Make sure you leave enough room at the top of the jar (at least 5 cm/2 inch) for the cheese to grow. As it ferments, lots of bubble will form and the cheese will expand upwards.
- Leave your mixture to ferment in a warm spot (out of direct sunlight) for 12-36 hours. Fermentation time will vary depending on the weather (the warmer the quicker), as well as what you want your finished product to be like. The longer the fermenting process, the sourer your cheese will be. The ideal temperature to ferment is around 24C- so if you are fermenting in winter it can take considerably longer! Try to create a warm spot- see blog post for what I do.
- You will know your cheese is ready when its nice and aerated, use a clean spoon to taste your cheese to see if you want a stronger ferment. You may find the top of the cheese has formed a skin- don’t worry, its perfectly fine- it will look just quite dry and not at all like mould. Google the difference if you need to. Just stir it in.
- If you choose not to ferment the beetroot (see above) you will now need to transfer the fermented cashew mix to a blender and add beetroot, blending until smooth. transfer to a storage container- as this is a fermented (living) product this should be glass.
- Add in the remaining dill and cumin and mix well. Taste, add more dill or cumin if desired and it you need an extra pop of flavour some more salt or lemon juice is a wonderful addition.
- Store in a dark glass jar in the fridge for up to 3 months.
*If you don’t have access to sauerkraut brine, you can use other fermented starters. The flavour will vary, but it will still work- any brine from unpasteurised fermented vegetables will work, or kombucha starter work well or various probiotics (from a capsule or powder form). Kulturedwellness also have great starters- you could use their kefir in place of the water in step 3. In fact, you can ferment the cashews without any starter at all, but the result is much less reliable.