|Cute little tasty raw bruschetta... mmm!|
So, I decided that there was only one thing to do: make my family a cashew cheesecake for Mother's Day. I am a far cry from a raw foodist, but I am fascinated and find it quite appealing. Likewise, I am by no means vegan but enjoy exploring vegan cuisine. Honestly, my biggest deterrent in exploring raw desserts has been the sheer cost of buying that many cashews. But this was seriously incredible for a special occasion.
Side note: Maple syrup? Not raw. The glaze? Not raw. As I said, I'm just exploring raw foods. Modify it if you want to keep it raw, or just make it as I did for a delicious vegan dessert.
- 3/4 cup dates
- 1 1/2 cup nuts (I used pecans)
- 3 tbsp flax seed
- 1 1/2 tbsp chopped ginger
- 2 1/2 cups cashews, soaked
- 1/3 cup coconut oil
- 1/3 cup maple syrup (or raw honey or agave to keep it raw)
- Juice of two lemons
- 1 cup frozen chopped strawberries
- 1/2 cup water + 1/4 cup water
- 2 tbsp grated ginger
- 2 tbsp maple syrup (or sweetener of choice)
- 1 tsp cornstarch
1. Soak cashews for 3-4 hours to overnight. I cheated, and used boiling water to speed up the soaking process. If you want to keep it raw, just start a little earlier.
2. Pulse crust ingredients in blender until they form a thick paste, with a larabar-like texture. The nuts should be mostly ground or in small pieces, and you should be able to form shapes with it.
3. Line a tin or baking dish with parchment paper/seran wrap/a clean plastic bag. Pat crust into the bottom of the tin to form a thin but solid layer, and place in freezer.
4. Drain cashews. Pulse cheesecake ingredients in food processor until creamy and smooth. Remove crust from freezer, pour filling into the dish, and return to the freezer.
Up to this point (minus the maple syrup and boiling water) the cheesecake is raw. The glaze, however, is definitely not raw. If you want to keep it raw, top with thawed strawberries. Otherwise...
5. Let strawberries thaw, at least partially. After cheesecake has hardened in freezer, add 1/2 cup water, grated ginger, and maple syrup to a small sauce pan, and heat to a boil.
6. Dissolve cornstarch in remaining water, reduce pan to a simmer, and add cornstarch mixture. Stir constantly, as this will thicken very suddenly.
7. Place 1/2 strawberries, thawed, on top of cheesecake.
8. Once glaze starts to thicken, add remaining strawberries. Mix until incorporated and thickened.
9. Pour glaze over cheesecake, and return to the freezer to harden for at least 10 minutes.