Cashews, vegan fermentation cultures, water, salt and spices – the ingredients in Dr Mudar Mannah’s vegan cheese alternatives are straightforward and easy to manage, and are used to create various flavours in his Happy Cheeze “happy kitchen” in Cuxhaven.
“We base our processes on conventional cheese production,” explained the Happy Cheeze founder. His handmade products, which consist primarily of fermented cashew nuts, are allowed to mature until they become tasty alternatives to traditional cream cheeses, hard cheeses, Camembert, cheesecakes or buttermilk made from organic raw ingredients. He said, “Happy Cheeze revolves around innovative vegan alternatives that people don’t have to acquire a taste for first, because they taste better than the original.” Blessed with an instinctive sense of flavour and great passion, the entrepreneur is responsible for the production of Happy Cheeze’s essences. He is proud of the fact that his products are ordered and loved by customers with all sorts of dietary preferences, backgrounds and incentives.
He found the path to his happy kitchen during some time out from his usual routine: After a short world tour across Asia and Australia in 2011, he decided with his family to leave his job as a doctor. He resigned from the stable-income post and devoted his time to finding vegan cheese alternatives, as he wasn’t impressed with the flavours or consistencies of the products available on the market at the time. Having already been a passionate cook in his spare time, he immediately created his own recipes and, in 2012, he founded his own company in Berlin. Two years later, the kitesurfing enthusiast moved his happy kitchen factory near the coast, setting up in Cuxhaven. He said, “Good food, kitesurfing, family and taking time out in quiet, tranquil places are essential for me to remain balanced.”
When the Happy Cheeze factory got to the point where it was no longer able to cope with the demand, he built a new production site in Cuxhaven, and this has been the heart of the happy kitchen since February 2017. Approximately 100,000 Happy Cheeze products are matured there every month before being shipped to customers all over the world.
In addition to his fresh and matured cheese alternatives made from raw vegan ingredients, Dr Mannah recently developed another exciting product: Buddamülch, which is a vegan alternative to buttermilk.
Happy Cheeze (www.happy-cheeze.com) will be one of the exhibitors in the Pavilion for Young German Companies. This pavilion is being supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) and is aimed at newcomers and start-ups based in Germany. 20 companies altogether will be presenting products there in hall 9 at BIOFACH, the World’s Leading Trade Fair for Organic Food (www.biofach.de), which takes place from 14 to 17 February 2018.
Photos: Happy Cheeze
CAPTION: Dr Mudar Mannah, Happy Cheeze