It’s Paleo! It’s Vegan! It’s Raw! Pretty sure ANYONE could eat this cheesecake. Peace through dessert, that’s what I always say! Except if you have a nut allergy. Crap.
This isn’t an original recipe by any means–When PaleOMG’s Caramel Cheesecake was born a couple months ago I was all over it like a fat kind on…Paleo cheesecake. Since then, I’ve made it thrice more, each time screwing a little with the ingredients (and doubling the amount of filling to put over the crust to make a bigger cake and satiate the 400-pound woman who lives inside me) and using raw instead of roasted nuts after my nut crisis.
Best thing, though, while I was wringing my hands trying to come up with a good Paleo/Vegan dessert to finish off this series, it hit me that all I would have to do to make this recipe Vegan-friendly was replace the honey with maple syrup. And, I mean, it gave me an excuse to make it again. Darn.
When making this cake, the most important thing to keep in mind is that you 1) need to soak the raw nuts just the right amount of time so they are neither too dry nor too bitter/mushy ans 2) blend everything for the filling VERY well so that it is a smooth, cheesecake-like consistency. The first time I made this with raw instead of roasted nuts I ended up with a grittier texture than I would have liked, so please-please-PLEASE make sure you’re running the food processor long enough.
1 c Raw Almond Butter
1 c Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
2/3 c Raw Chopped Pecans
1 T Coconut Butter
1 T Maple Syrup
1/4 t Salt
3 c Raw Cashews, soaked and drained
1 c Coconut Oil, softened
1 c Maple Syrup
Juice of 1 Lemon
1/4 c Coconut Milk
2 t Vanilla
To soak your cashews, put the raw nuts in a bowl and cover with cold water and a pinch of salt. Then place the bowl in the refrigerator and allow to soak for 4-6 hours. Don’t soak for more than 24 hours or they will become bitter.
Generously grease a springform pan with coconut oil and place in the freezer.
To make the crust, combine almond butter, coconut, pecans, coconut butter, salt, and syrup in a food processor. Pulse at first to combine everything, then run the processor until you have a sticky but smooth-looking mass. Scoop it out and press into the bottom of your springform pan and place back in the freezer.
For the filling, drain the cashews but don’t let them get too dry. Place the cashews in the food processor and pulse until they are a fine consisitency. Add the coconut oil, syrup, lemon juice, coconut milk, and vanilla. Run the food processor for 3-5 minutes until you have a very smooth, creamy mixture. Pour the filling over the crust (the crust doesn’t have to be completely frozen at this point). Place the cheesecake back in the freezer for at least 3 hours, until firm.