Monday, July 23, 2012

Raw Vegan Cheesecake

FOR ONCE, this is not a Joy the Baker inspired cooking post. 
It is, however, Blogilates inspired. 
I made this today and I'm already putting it on the blog. Woofreakinghoo.

Since it is vegan, there's no cheese in this cheesecake. And since it is raw there is no cooking or heat (except melting the coconut oil). I took copious pictures. Let's get into it. 

I started with the crust:

1/2 cup dates

2 cups walnuts

Throw 'em in a food processor 

Pour the resulting crumbliness (technical term) into your pan!

Press it all down reeeeal good like:
Voilà! Crust.

OK, Cheesy time!

Soak 3 cups of RAW cashews overnight:

Drain them, and throw them in a food processor with:

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/2 cup organic agave syrup

3/4 cup coconut oil

PAUSE. It has to be melted. 
Grab yourself a pan, fill it halfway with water, put it on medium heat.
Put 3/4 cup coconut oil in a glass bowl, then stick the bowl in the pan.


After! (steamy)

Pour that oil in the food processor, and also add a teaspoon of vanilla extract.

You're ready to process! (make it nice and smooth)
Here's what you get:
(unsure why this picture is vertical. don't know how to rotate).

Pour that delectable mixture into your pan, and spread it evenly:

Stick that baby in the freezer, for a minimum of 3 hours.

When you're just about ready to take it out, whip up some sauce!
I did a (frozen) berry combo.

Totally eyeballed the amount. Probably around a cup.

1/4 cup agave

(There are also 4 dates in there!!)

Then blend it all together!

I put my berry sauce in a ziploc so I could drizzle it on the cheesecake with precision.


Drizzle on the sauce, and EAT!

What's the verdict?
SO good. It's so good. It really is similar to cheesecake, but you feel a lot less disgusting after you eat this. It's just a CLEAN taste. Again, it's RAW. We only used natural foods (minus the vanilla extract and agave, which are basically natural but had to be processed in some way) so you don't get any weird processed/chemical or refined sugar aftertaste. 
The thing you should know, though, is that it's still highly caloric. Both the crust and the filling are nut based, and we all know that nuts = calories and fat. But it's the good kind of fat, and they also have a lot of protein. So while you probably shouldn't be eating more than a piece of this at a time, don't worry too much about the calories. They aren't the be-all and end-all of nutrition.
(also there have been studies showing that a handful of cashews have a similar effect as a dose of Prozac, so this is a HAPPY cheesecake!)

Bottom line... MAKE THIS. And serve it to all your friends who think eating raw vegan makes yumminess impossible. They are wrong.

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