Sunday, April 19, 2015

Dairy Free, Cherry Cheesecake


Vegan or not, you're going to love this recipe! It tastes very much like real cheesecake and it's easy to make.  My last vegan cheesecake was made with cashews which was delicious but this time around I wanted to try a different method. My goal is to discover new methods to create desserts or dishes which are both vegan and in many cases healthier than ordinary recipes that contain dairy. Though this cake calls for powdered sugar, sometimes you just need a little sugar in your life:) 

I used organic powdered sugar which I purchased at the "Harvest Health" store but you can get it at most any health food store around. To my understanding that makes for a true vegan recipe because organic sugar is bone char free. If ever I use sugar in my future recipes it will now be organic which is a win win because it's  both vegan and as far as sugar goes, organic may help you stay closer to your health goals. Here's the recipe...give it a try!

INGREDIENTS:

  • Crust:
  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs (Nabisco graham crackers are 100% vegan)
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbs non dairy butter such as Earth Balance, melted
  • 2 Tbs organic powdered sugar only if using graham crackers without honey to make for a true vegan recipe)

  • Filling:
  1 (8 oz) package of Firm Silken Tofu ( I purchased a 16 oz and had to cut it in half )
  1 (8 oz) container of non dairy cream cheese ( I used Tofutti purchased at health food     store)
  1 freshly squeezed lemon
  1 Tbs vanilla
  1 cup organic confectioners sugar
  1 Tbs cornstarch
  2 Tbs non dairy milk
  1 (21 oz) can cherries or 1 1/2 cup fresh cherries


Method:

1. Preheat over to 350 degrees
2. Mix together graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. Press into lightly greased spring foam pan (or pie plate). I choose a spring foam pan to make the unique crust as pictured. The crust can be pressed upwards against the interior of the spring foam pan. Bake for 5 minutes. 
3. In blender ( I used my ninja for extra smooth results but you can probably use a regular blender ) combine tofu, vegan cream cheese, lemon, vanilla, sugar and blend until smooth. Add cornstarch to soy milk and whisk. Add to blended ingredients. Poor filling into crust and smooth with spatula. 
4. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes then reduce heat to 325 for 15 minutes. Let cool for 2-3 hours. I let mine cool in the spring foam pan in the fridge. 
5. Prior to removing spring foam pan, gently add cherry topping without touching the sides of the crust as it is delicate. Gently remove spring foam pan without disturbing the crust. Because the crust is delicate I did not remove the spring foam pan base when cutting and serving. The crust was was crumbly but it sure looks beautiful doesn't it?!









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