Updated: Apr 25, 2019
The Flourish family love to eat, and eat well and by that I mean there is no room for 'guilty pleasures' in my house or holistic practice. Pleasure should be just that, with no guilt attached and I'll talk about the importance of this in another blog post.
While I enjoy flinging different things together and see how they turn out, I’m not really in the business of blogging recipes but after sharing my Vegan & Gluten Free Summer Berry ‘Cheese’cake a while ago, there was a request or two for the recipe. So here it is. My apologies for the lack of photographs - it never hangs around long enough for me to take good pictures! - but this is something I keep reminding myself to do each time I make it so hopefully I can upload some soon.
Dairy, Eggs, Milk, Wheat and Gluten Free
There’s no dairy, eggs, wheat or gluten in this so it's perfect for vegans and milk, dairy or gluten intolerance but it's also a dessert that will go down well with everyone. It’s quick, simple and easily adapted for different flavour combinations. The base isn’t a usual cheesecake biscuit base (although this could be done by substituting with wheat free digestive biscuits) but what it lacks in crunch, it more than makes up for in flavour and nutrition. The filling can be popped in the fridge once it’s whizzed in the processor and the texture is a little firmer once it's been cooked and cooled, reminiscent of a slightly firmer, less slippery panna cotta.
This will make enough for four standard sized ramekins or a medium sized flan dish, with a wee bit left over. If there’s any extra base, I usually roll it into balls and dust them with cocoa to make little spheres of energy food that are great for when you’re flagging during the day.
You can use any fruit for the topping, cooked or fresh. I used frozen mixed berries – they’re great to have to hand in the freezer and they cook quickly from frozen. I like to add a wee splash of booze to the topping – it makes it a little bit more indulgent if you’re making this for guests but it’s purely optional. For the Summer Berry version, I added a splash of Creme de Cassis as it complements the berries well but you can add whatever you fancy.
What You'll Need
Four ramekins or a medium sized flan dish
Spatula and spoon
Cup (standard teacup size)
Ingredients for the base
2 cups nuts (walnuts, brazils, macademia – I’ve used mixed nuts and it works just as well)
1 cup pitted dates (the stickier the better. You could also use sultanas or raisins)
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch of ground cardamom
Pinch of salt
Sliver of oil (to grease the ramekins)
Put the nuts in the food processor bowl and whizz until fine in texture. Add the dates, spices and salt and whizz again. Scrape the mixture down from the insides of the processor bowl and whizz again. Grease the ramekins with a little of the oil and scoop the base mixture into the ramekins, pressing gently to mould it to the bottom and sides. Place in the fridge while you make the filling. Give the processor bowl and quick clean.
‘Cheese’cake filling ingredients
1 pack of Silken Organic Firm Tofu or similar (organic tofu is usually GMO free)
1/4 cup of icing sugar
Vanilla pod or vanilla extract (optional)
1/8 cup of vegetable oil (sunflower, light olive, etc)
1 tbsp of lemon juice (freshly squeezed is preferable)
Couple of large pinches of salt
Preheat the oven to 350 F, 175 C. Put all the ingredients in the (newly cleaned) food processor bowl and whizz until smooth. I like to sift the icing sugar first before this, for absolutely no other reason than I can pretend I’m a proper baker. Pour the mixture into the base lined ramekins. Remember to lick the bowl – it’s the best bit. Place the ramekins on a baking tray and pop in the oven for 20 – 30 minutes, until it is starting to turn a wee bit brown at the edges. Remove from the oven and place somewhere safe (away from prying eyes and poking fingers) to cool down then pop in the fridge until it’s chilled.
Summer berry topping ingredients
3 cups of frozen mixed berries
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp icing sugar to sweeten
Heat all the ingredients on a medium heat in a small pan, stirring gently to make sure it doesn’t stick and the berries don’t turn to mush. Once the mixture starts to thicken and the berries are heated through, take off the heat and place somewhere to cool. Once cool, place on top of the cooled filling and place the ramekins back in the fridge. They’ll keep for a day or two, and will get firmer the longer you leave them in the fridge. Enjoy!
Copyright © Andrea Doran, Flourish and Contributors - Original Date of Publication June 2018 | For personal use and information only