Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Dairy-Free, Soy-Free Strawberry Cheesecake


Dairy-Free, Soy-Free Strawberry Cheesecake

Crust

1 ½ cups finely ground graham crackers (gluten-free/vegan graham crackers available at whole foods)
4-6 Tbsp Earth Balance (soy-free) buttery spread

***you can make your life easier by simply buying a graham cracker pie crust but not sure if these are vegan and definitely won't be gluten-free though it is quicker n' easier

Filling

3 cups soaked raw cashews (soak minimum 3 hours in water)
¾ cup coconut oil
¾ cup agave/honey (I like the combo of both better than simply one or the other)
½ cup FRESH lemon juice **do not use store bought lemon juice, tastes disgusting
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
a bit of water to help with the blending...do not use any water if you don't need it

Topping

1 cup fresh strawberries
½ cup frozen raspberries
5 pitted medjool dates



























Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

First, you'll need to finely ground your graham crackers. I do this by throwing them in a zip lock bag and rolling it with a rolling pin. You can also take out some anger by beating the bag with a heavy spoon just don't get too violent as that will make for some holes followed by a mess. Once you have your crumbs, go ahead and melt your vegan butter, add the crumbs and butter into a bowl, and blend together. You'll want to use a glass pie pan for the cheesecake. Press your crumbly graham into the pan working it up the edges as best as possible then place into the oven at 375F for about 7 minutes or until you see a bit of browning. Let completely cool before placing in the filling.

For the filling, you'll place all the filling ingredients into the blender. The best way to get everything to blend ceremoniously together is to be strategic in your which ingredient goes in first. Start with your lemon juice, vanilla, coconut oil and agave/honey then blend until smooth. Now, you'll add the soaked cashews. Blend until smooth. Add the tiniest bit of water if things aren't blending easily. Add the filling mixture onto your graham crust and place into the freezer for about 10-20 minutes.

For the topping, simply blend all the ingredients in the blender. Remove the your cheesecake from the freezer and pour on a thin layer of strawberry topping (you may have some leftover but this can be used as extra topping once served). Place the cheesecake back into the freezer for at least 2 hours before serving. I made this the night before and let it defrost for about 1 hour before serving so it wasn't as frozen. Tastes wonderful with a bit extra of the strawberry topping drizzled on the plate. Everyone will love this recipe!


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