As we sift through the undulations of our impending move I do try to sneak away for some quiet time to myself. Not to think really, but rather just to be still and rest my mind which has tediously been racing away like a field mouse in the spring. Cozied with a book and a little something to quench my sweet tooth I find these little "me" times are few and far between. Once we have moved and settled into our new home, which we have yet to find, I hope to call life "peaceful" and not get burdened with too many to-do's. I want to lead a quieter life, placid and less self evolved. I have so many visions of the new life we will begin in Birmingham, but I will not spout them out today. No, for now I shall ponder them in my heart and relish these few last quiet moments here in the Emerald City.
Now, most of you did not come to hear my arbitrary ramblings so I will do as you bid and get on with the star of this post, the cheesecake. Dairy, Grain, Gluten, Egg Free and RAW, this is no ordinary cheesecake. No my friends this is a round mold of serendipitous deliciousness! The crust, ground up almonds and dates, adds a satisfying crunch. The "cheese", comprised of fresh meyer lemon, vanilla bean, cashews, honey and coconut oil lends the creamiest, smoothest texture. And the topping, a simple combination of blueberries and honey.
A high protein, and rather wonderful alternative to traditional cheesecake, this cake has now become a go-to dessert for special occasions or just for those dismal days when we are in need of something colorful.
How do you like to relax or give your mind a rest? I hope to fill my unloved shelves with piles of neglected books and untold stories, take up the violin, and sing more.....I love to sing but so often burry my gift. There is so much I want to do, I pray my mind will rest awhile and bestow me the time to embrace what it lacks, peace.
Meyer Lemon, Vanilla Bean Cheesecake
(tweaked from Emily Lee Angell's recipe)
For the Crust
- 2 cups raw almonds soaked overnight
- 1/2 cup dates, pitted (about 7 or 8 dates) if dates are really dry, put them in a bowl of warm water for 10 minutes, discard water
- 1/4 cup non-sweetened coconut flakes
Place almonds and dates in a food processor and mix until chopped and well incorporated. Cover the bottom of a 9inch spring form cake pan with the coconut flakes (this prevents the cake from sticking the the pan). Pour the almond mixture on top of the coconut flakes , spread out and mold into the cake pan.
For the Filling
- 3 cups raw cashews soaked for three hours
- 3/4 cup fresh meyer lemon juice
- 3/4 cup raw honey (you can use regular honey if you don't want to go 100% raw)
- 3/4 cup raw coconut oil (Artisana is my favorite brand) you do not have to warm it, just use it straight out of jar
- 1 tsp vanilla or 1 vanilla bean, split open and seeds scraped, pod discarded
- 1/2 tsp celtic sea salt
To make the cheese, blend the cashews, lemon, honey, coconut oil, vanilla/vanilla bean, and sea salt. Blend until smooth and adjust to taste. (For the best results you need to use a high speed blender!)
Pour mixture on top of the "crust" and carefully tap the pan on the counter to release any air bubbles.
For the topping
- 1 bag of frozen blueberries (or any berry that you prefer)
- honey or dates to sweeten ( I didn't measure I just poured and tasted)
- 1/4 cup apple cider (this is optional, but my mixture was too thick so I added the cider to smooth it out....orange juice would work great too or water if needed)
Place honey, berries and cider/juice in a high speed blender and process until smooth. Pour over "cheese" mixture.
Place the pan in the freezer for at least three hours or overnight. Before serving place on counter to thaw slightly. This is best served semi frozen, soft enough to run a serrated knife through.