Through the Fire

Cooking our way into a new relationship with food!

Say (Sunflower) Cheese, please!

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This is a revised version of a post from September 19, 2015.

I am on a cleanse this week. I’m participating in a 7 day Ayurvedic cleanse . I have been curious about Ayurveda for years but apparently not curious enough to do anything about it until now. I also have been sort of stuck and not being able to / ready to change things up and get rid of the inflammation that is causing me some difficulties these days.  I was informed about and invited to the cleanse at the right time. It was starting in 2 days so I had to make up my mind quickly. I immediately got scared a little, which made me realize that it is exactly what I need to be doing! So, here I am, writing this on Day 4. Already! It’s not a fasting cleanse or a juicing cleanse. We are eating plenty of food. Since this is late winter, our focus is on the kidneys, and our focus is on moving stagnation and warming up. Perfect! It’s pretty close to the way I eat when I am on track, feeling good and eating what makes me feel good. We are staying away from nuts. Also perfect for me as it is so easy to eat way too many of them and then digestion gets a bit screwy. Seeds are encouraged. I remembered the recipe included below which I haven’t made in some time. I got behind with everything so for the sake of transparency, I am soaking the sunflower seeds now and haven’t made this yet this week. The photo of it is the old one.


Keep your face to the sunshine, it’s what sunflowers do.

~ Helen Keller

Sunflower seeds are an amazing source of nutrition. In researching today, I realized I had no idea ( or maybe had forgotten) what a powerhouse of minerals they are – magnesium, copper, selenium. Most people do not get enough of these important minerals. This is largely because our soil has become depleted. ( hmm, yet another reason to buy from a small organic farm which pays attention to these things) and a poor choice of foods. Read this and see what foods besides sunflower seeds will provide you with needed minerals.


I’ve not ever been one of those people who likes to eat sunflower seeds as above. Not fond of the spitting that is required! ( That’s the truth, I can hardly spit. That seems funny to me because I am not all that ladylike except for this) Besides just munching on them, or adding them to a salad, what other ways can we incorporate the delicious little sunflower seed ?

If you are not familiar with Pinterest, it can be a great ( albeit, sometimes very time sucking and/or mind numbing) source of inspiration. Check these ideas out.

In general, I avoid dairy. This week, it is also off the list for the cleanse. As I said before so are nuts. Look here for some fabulous nut “cheese” recipes.

Seed Cheeze

1C sunflower seeds
1C pumpkin seeds
pure water
1/4t probiotic powder (or 2 the powder from probiotic capsules)
herbs and spices of your choosing ( total amount can be around a teaspoon)
salt and pepper to tast

Place pumpkin and sunflower seeds into a 1 quart jar. Fill the jar with good filtered water. Soak overnight, and strain the liquid. Rinse with more filtered water. Place in your food processor fitted with the S blade with the probiotic powder and seasonings. Blend until the texture is smooth. You may need to add a tablespoon of water or more. Taste and adjust your seasonings.

my notes: For the cleanse, the spices I chose are fennel, cumin, and coriander, salt, and pepper. I also used a liquid flavorless probiotic drink that I have – about a tablespoon) ( I could have used more and made it creamier) . Herbes de Provence is a really good choice of herbs, as would be granulated garlic. Experiment with orange or lemon zest. Orange and cinnamon would make a really good breakfast-y treat.

Let the probiotics do their thing by leaving it on the counter covered with a thin cloth. A few hours will do and no, it won’t go “bad.” ( Just skip the whole probiotic thing if it seems too weird)



It’s more like a paté than a cheese. (You can make it so that you can firm it up and slice it to make it more cheese like. I think it’s really good. As you can see, I put it on a little piece of sunflower cracker bread that I love. See it here. If you went ahead and thinned it down, it would be a great dip for celery, etc.

I hope you try it. Please let me know how it turns out. I’m excited about adding this back into my recipe repertoire.

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