Free From Foodie: Vegan Day treat

A year ago the prospect of coming up with a gluten free and vegan and good-for-you dessert beyond an exotic fruit salad would have been a bit of a challenge…but I’ve since discovered the wonderful world of raw food desserts and have never looked back!Vegan Day

I’ve really been looking forward to World Vegan Day as an opportunity to share healthy gluten free food ideas at their most creative…and my new favourite recipe! The potential of simple, natural whole foods to create surprisingly delicious and indulgent dishes is boundless and it seems almost impossible they can be sooo good for you too.
One of the special benefits of raw food eating is you get the very best out of all the ingredients, as there is no cooking involved all the precious nutrients are at their most potent so every mouthful is a guilt free pleasure. Who would imagine that an avocado could so deliciously replace cream in a luxurious chocolate mousse or that cashew nuts make an excellent soft ‘cheese’ …which brings me on to this week’s recipe, lime and ginger ‘cheesecake’

 

 

 

Lime and ginger cheesecake (4-6)

Ingredients

Base
• 50g brazil nuts
• 25g ground golden flax seed
• 25g unsweetened desiccated coconut
• 2 plump soft dates
• 2 tsp grated fresh ginger or chopped stem ginger (leave it out if you don’t like ginger)
• 2 tbsp Biona Virgin coconut oil (when melted)
Topping
• 225g  cashew nuts (soaked overnight or for 8 hours in cold water)
• 125ml Biona organic coconut milk
• 2 tbsp Biona virgin coconut oil (when melted)
• 8 plump soft dates
• Juice and zest of 2 limes
• 1 tbsp honey, agave or maple syrup
• 10g vegan dark chocolate (optional)

Preparation Method

1. Soak all the dates in warm water for 15 minutes to soften and then drain (if I have an extra lime to hand I use the juice to soak the dates for extra tang)

2. Melt all the coconut oil in a small bowl over boiling water (like a mini bain-marie)

3. Put 4 of the softened dates, brazil nuts, desiccated coconut, flax, ginger and 2 tbs of the coconut oil into a food processor and combine well to form a course textured sticky ‘crumb’
4. Press the mixture firmly into the base of individual food rings or ramekins (or use one small spring-form cake tin)
5. Put in the fridge to set while you make the cream

6. Rinse and drain the soaked cashew nuts, add to a high speed blender or food processor with the lime juice and zest, coconut milk, honey and rest of the coconut oil, blend well (around 2 minutes) until the mixture is smooth and creamy. A high speed is needed to get a smooth ‘cream’, a good blender may achieve this better than a food processor
7. Pour the topping mixture onto the base and spread evenly. Top with curls of lime zest and dark chocolate
8. Put in the fridge for at least 4 hours to set. If you are short of time put in a freezer and take out 30 minutes before serving
Variations: Add a layer of dark chocolate to the chilled base and leave to set before topping or add chopped stem ginger to the ‘cheese’ mix for extra zing!

Nicky Robinson combines her work in fair trade with other life-long passions for natural good food and positive healthy living. Her own experience with Coeliac Disease has led her to study for an MSc in Nutritional Therapy and develop a special interest in nutritious and delicious gluten free cooking

Nicky Robinson

Nicky Robinson combines her work in fair trade with other life-long passions for natural good food and positive healthy living. Her own experiences with Coeliac Disease have led to her study for an MSc in Nutritional Therapy and special interest in nutritious and delicious gluten free cooking.

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