Raw Strawberry Vanilla Cheesecake

| Dessert, Ice Cream and Candies

No words needed…

raw strawberry cheesecakeRich, creamy, smooth…..And the texture of the base contrasts beautifully with the soft texture of the cheesecake itself.  This is by no means a low calorie dessert – it is loaded with nuts which makes it a rather high calorie dessert…BUT!  Unlike the usual dairy cheesecake which is loaded with saturated fats, this is loaded with good fats – fats that protect your heart and do not harm your arteries.  So, as with anything in life, enjoy desserts in moderation in order to maintain your weight, but at least while eating this, you can rest assured that it is nourishing your body and doing no harm.

Ingredients

Crust

  • 1 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 cups pitted medjool dates 

Where I live, medjool dates are far more expensive than regular dates.  I therefore used half medjool dates and half regular dates.  The only reason medjool is recommended here is because it is a fleshier, moister date and it therefore makes a nice moist paste that binds the base.  If you can not find medjool dates, you can usually substitute it with the same amount of regular dates that you have soaked in boiling water for a few hours.  Just obviously drain off the excess water before using the dates.

Cheesecake

  • 3 cups raw unsalted cashews
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cups melted coconut oil
  • 1 vanilla bean, cut in half, seeds scraped out for use, or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice (bottled is fine)
  • 1/2 cup agave nectar 

Once again, agave is quite pricey….for that reason, when making this for guests, I usually use golden syrup as it is much cheaper.  My favourite golden syrup is Lyles golden syrup, but I DO NOT RECOMMEND LYLES FOR THIS RECIPE as it has a very strong taste and will interfere with the delicate taste of the vanilla and strawberries.  When making this for myself (I make a big cake and freeze slices for later), I use agave as I try to limit my sugar consumption and take the low GI route where possible.  I would think that maple syrup would work well here too.

  • 2 cups strawberries (the riper the better) (feel free to use blueberries or raspberries if preferred or for variation)

Instructions

Soak the cashews overnight in water. Drain them and set aside.

Place the almonds and salt in a food processor and grind roughly. Add the dates and process until the mixture is uniform and sticks together when you squeeze a bit in the palm of your hand. Press mixture evenly onto the bottom of a greased 9” springform pan.

Use a high speed blender (not a food processor) to blend all filling ingredients except the strawberries thoroughly, until silky smooth. Stop every now and then to give your blender a break and scrape down the sides so that all the solid bits get blended.

Pour half the mixture into the pan on top of the crust.  Place in the fridge to set.  This takes about 30 minutes to an hour.  It doesn’t set to be hard (your finger will leave a little mark when you touch the surface), but it sets so that it is no longer liquid and when you pour the rest of the pink mixture on top, it does not mix.

Now blend the strawberries with the left over mixture and pour over the vanilla layer of your cake.  Pop back into the fridge to set.  Leave to set for at least 3 hours before slicing, but I usually make this a day in advance and leave it overnight.  Store cake in the fridge.  It is best to slice it immediately upon taking it out of the fridge as it slices easier when firmer.  As it sits at room temperature, the texture softens and makes slicing it neatly more tricky.  A sliced piece of cake holds it’s shape perfectly at room temperature though.

It freezes well so be sure to freeze any surviving pieces for later:)

Freeze a slice for me!
Dr T

 

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