I love bagels. There’s not much better than a nice smear on an everything bagel. I really miss the fresh baked bagels I got in my neighborhood when I lived in Brooklyn. There was a place that sold bagels wholesale, and you could smell the cinnamon raisin ones baking from blocks away.
It felt like you were doing something a little underhanded when you went through the back door into the huge room of ovens, men and cooling racks. Someone would eventually notice you and tell you what they were baking that night. It was a cash only endeavor making it seem even more elicit.
They would pile the bagels fresh from the oven into a plain paper grocery sack and roll down the top. The bag was always handed to me so I could grab it by its wadded top. That’s because they were too hot to carry from the bottom. I swear those bagels were almost as big as my head. The cost for a wonderful bagel like that was 25 cents each and you could get a deal on a bakers dozen.
As much as I romanticize those bagels, I’m in North Carolina now. It’s not the bagel capital of the world, but the bagels are pretty decent here if you go to the right places. Hint: the right place is not the grocery store. I’ve even found a bakery (bagelry?) that makes a whole wheat everything bagel which, in my opinion, is the perfect combo.
I’ve solved my problem of getting bagels, but there is another issue. Now that I don’t eat dairy I’ve found that I’m not very fond of most of the store-bought vegan cream cheeses. I created a tasty oat-based faux cream cheese for OATrageous Oatmeals, but I can’t share that one here. So I needed to make one with a non-oat ingredient and there was a perfectly ripe avocado on the counter…
I know, I’ve been a little obsessed with all things avocado ever since I had an amazing avocado dinner at Eat Write Retreat. The Californian Avocado Commission hosted it and was the best meal I’ve ever had at a conference.
Since avocados are nature’s butter why not let them make your homemade vegan cream cheese more luxurious? I combined them with a thick cashew cream to add some heft and added in my favorite garlic herb combination.
You can use the base and make your favorite flavor like walnut agave, olive or strawberry. What’s your favorite bagel and cream cheese combination?
This recipe is included in the Virtual Vegan Linky Potluck – be sure to check out the other great recipes there.
- ½ cup raw cashews
- 1 cup water
- 1 medium avocado
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning
- ¼ teaspoon granulated garlic or 1 minced clove
- salt, to taste
- Soak the cashew in the water overnight or at least 2 hours.
- Drain off any left over water that was not absorbed by the cashews. Add the drained cashews, avocado, lemon juice, Italian seasonings and garlic into a blender.
- Blend until smooth, stop and scrape down the sides and repeat until the mixture is smooth.