Almond & Cashew Paste ‘nooj’ – Having an allergy to dairy, means I am always on the lookout for dairy alternatives and was excited to try nooj. An innovative Almond or Cashew dairy substitute.
nooj is essentially a creamy smooth, ready-to-use almond or cashew nut paste containing 64 – 66 % nuts. The product can easily be made into a luxurious nut drink by adding water according to taste with each 150g pouch capable of making up to 1.5 litres (6% nut content).
Straight from the fridge, nooj also offers great versatility as a cooking and baking ingredient providing instant velvety creaminess when added to porridge, smoothies, curries, soups, sauces, and fillings. Moreover, the versatility of nooj means that the simple addition of citrus juice, oil, vinegar, herbs, and garlic, can result in the creation of various delicious home-made sauces and spreads that can stand in for a variety of traditional dairy products such as cream, yoghurt, cream cheese, mayonnaise, bechamel, ricotta….
Yorkshire-based Caroline Barton created nooj almost by default whilst making her own homemade nut drink. She realised it was more useful, versatile, and easier to store in paste form, rather than as a liquid.
Her original motivation for making her own nut drink came from an ongoing dissatisfaction with mass-produced, plant-based drinks, i.e., high water and meagre nut content. Having realised that her creation had real consumer potential she became determined to make nooj a reality.
Caroline said: “nooj is a truly innovative addition to the dairy alternative category, that not only provides consumers with a meaningful choice when it comes to selecting dairy-free products but gives real impetus to nut-based milk that has started to fall behind its oat and soya-based peers”.
I embrace the fact that the nooj pouch enables the nut paste to be conveniently stored in the fridge door, taking up less space than their counterparts, and with the knowledge, that the handy packs meanwhile can be recycled along with ‘soft plastics’
It’s worth noting too that the packs contain relatively little water as the pastes are essentially concentrated, to which tap water is added to make sumptuous nut drinks. Reduced weight and volume make the product a more planet-friendly alternative in terms of lower emissions and the needless trapping of precious water.
Having tried the product, with positive results, I feel it now has a permanent place in my kitchen.
Caroline has shared a couple of sweet sauce recipes to try, however, there are additional recipe ideas on the website too. These sauces are super easy to throw together and a real must-try, you won’t be able to stop eating them! Also perfect for pancakes, cakes, and desserts too.
Salted Caramel sauce
110g nooj (cashew works well here but you can use either)
20 ml water
220ml maple syrup
Pinch of sea salt
Start by adding your nooj to a heatproof bowl then make it into a thick cream by mixing in the water (gradually), this just allows the syrup to be combined more easily with the nooj.
Add the syrup to a pan and simmer gently for a few minutes, agitate the pan a little while the syrup is cooking.
Once the syrup is thicker and darker, pour it into your nooj cream and combine with a mini whisk, add a pinch of sea salt, taste, and add a little more if necessary.
Keep in a lidded jar in the fridge, and makes about 300 ml of sauce.
80g nooj (cashew works well here)
4 tbs maple syrup
120 ml water (this amount will create a sauce consistency perfect for dipping, but should you want a thinner sauce to pour, or a thicker sauce to spread then this could be reduced or increased.
For a creamy porridge add a heaped teaspoon straight to the pan along with oats and water and simmer to perfection.
Add nooj straight from the pack to your favourite fresh smoothie ingredients, fruit, vegetables, and seeds. Add some water and blitz for a quick and healthy start to the day.
Squeeze nooj straight into curries, soups and stews for a creamy finish and extra nutritional oomph. If you have a thinner curry or soup, try mixing nooj with a little lime, lemon juice, stock, or water for easier blending.
Use nooj as a base to bind veggie burger ingredients.
Add nooj to sautéd mushrooms with a little stock or lemon juice for a delicious and creamy pasta sauce.