Pay special attention to steps 1 and 2—this is the key to blending a sauce with an authentic look and feel. Many cooks fail here—they don’t blend the mixture long enough. The result is a somewhat gritty or grainy texture. Blend nuts with a small amount of water—enough to submerge them. A thicker mixture results and will become smooth more quickly. Then add the rest of the water in the recipe. This is why, in many of our recipes, some water is added while blending and then more is added later.
1 cup raw cashew nuts
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt or more to taste
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 tablespoon Chicken-Like Seasoning (or 1 tablespoon food yeast flakes and ½ teaspoon more salt)
½ teaspoon garlic powder (optional)
2 tablespoons cornstarch, flour, or Clear Jel
1½ cups more water (to be added after blending)
1. Place all ingredients in blender (with just the 2 cups water) and blend on high for about 2 minutes until smooth.
2. When the mixture is so smooth that no graininess is felt in a drop of it between your thumb and finger, pour into a saucepan. Add the 1½ cups more water to the blender, swish it around, and add to the mixture in the pan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly as it thickens to keep it from lumping. As soon as it thickens, remove from heat.
3. If a thicker sauce is needed, return to heat and slowly stir in more starch that has been dissolved in cold water, letting it come to a gentle boil as it thickens.
Makes 4 cups.