virtual vegan potluck: raw strawberry cream cake at last!
Posted May 12 2012 12:01am
Guess what today is everyone? It’s finally here: the Virtual Vegan Potluck! A day where 66 bloggers (I think I counted right?) are coming together to link up recipes for 8 different courses for a virtual vegan feast! Here is the lovely organizer’s, Ann, little blurb on it:
Bringing vegan food bloggers together to share a virtual potluck, linked by a blog circle – and our love of cooking, eating and sharing. Participating bloggers will post recipes – from appetizers to desserts – and photos on the day of the event. Non-vegans welcome as long as they prepare a cruelty- and animal-free dish.
A big shout out to Ann at An Unrefined Vegan for organizing this event. She has put so much time into it and it is such a fantastic way to connect bloggers and readers from all over the world to share food when otherwise we would not be able too. You rock Ann!
This potluck acts as a sort of chain where there is a beginning and an end, starting with appetizers and finishing with desserts. If this is your first stop make sure to scroll to the end of the post to find links to the beginning of the potluck, the post before mine and the one that follows!
Now for my contribution, those of you who know me well, could probably predict what I was contributing. Dessert of course. What else? I think though next time I will challenge myself to contribute something savoury. I mean there is obviously going to be a next time and I’m sure it will be even bigger and better!
This was a long awaited recipe, I got so many requests for it following this teaser post , that I almost felt bad for not immediately sharing it with you. But I knew I wanted to save it for this blog event because it deserves a special recipe. And this, my friends, is a very special recipe.
I made this cake for my mom’s birthday at the end of April, when I was still knee deep in the first week of my cleanse. This meant no added sweeteners except stevia and dates, no soy, no grains, no chocolate. Bonus points if I made the cake raw as well, since high raw was/is the name of the game! This meant most traditional cakes were simply not an option. Even most raw cakes posed a bit of a problem, requiring agave as a sweetener. Sure I could have made my mom something more traditional, but then I wouldn’t get to enjoy it and where’s the fun in that? I was determined to make my mom a cake she would love and that I could eat, and all my hard work and planning paid off.
This cake was inspired by the Raw Cashew Dreamcake from Sarah at My New Roots . I had to play around with proportions since I was making a larger cake as well as substitute for the raw honey she used as the sweetener. I also wanted to challenge myself to lighten up this cake a bit. Yes a complete cake made with cashews and coconut oil would be absolutely fantastic, but was there a way to lighten it up just a bit, maybe even sneak in some extra fruits and veggies? Wait a second who am I asking here, of course there was! And the results are amazing :)
Raw Strawberry Cream Cake (Vegan, Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free, Raw)
This cake DOES NOT taste like it fits within my cleanse principles. It is rich, creamy, sweet, decadent and so special tasting. The crust adds an earthy sweetness and crunch to the cake which has 2 layers: one akin to a cheesecake, the next a strawberry cheesecake. Topped with strawberry coulis it is the perfect cake for a celebration, be it a birthday or potluck!
This can be enjoyed completely frozen for an more ice cream cake type dessert, or my preferred method, thawed from frozen, but still chilled, as a “cheesecake”. It’s all up to you!
3/4 cup almonds
3/4 cup medjool dates
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 cups raw cashews, soaked
juice of 2 lemons
1 frozen banana, sliced before freezing
1 peeled, roughly chopped zucchini
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
10 drops vanilla stevia
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
1 cup strawberries, fresh or frozen (thawed if using frozen)
1 cup strawberries, fresh or frozen (thawed if using frozen)
1 tsp lemon juice
1 medjool date, soaked and pitted
For the crust, pulse the almonds in a food processor until finely ground then add the dates and sea salt and process until the mixture will stick together when you press it. Press the mixture into an 8-inch spring-form pan and place in the refrigerator while you make the filling
First, pulse the chopped zucchini in the food processor until finely shredded. Next add the rest of the crust ingredients except the coconut oil and the strawberries. Start running the food processor and while it’s going slowly poor the coconut oil in and process until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
Take the spring-form pan out of the fridge and pour about 1/2 – 2/3 of the mixture into the pan. Just eye-ball it, it doesn’t matter too much! Smooth it out and put it back in the fridge. Take the remaining cashew mixture and process it with the 1 cup of strawberries until smooth. Carefully pour this mixture into the pan and spread until even, being careful not to let the layers mix as you do this. Put in the cake in the freezer for45min-1hr to firm up or for longer for an “ice cream” cake.
To make the coulis, just blend up the 3 ingredients until smooth.
Take the cake out of the freezer a few minutes before serving so it thaws a bit. If it’s been in the freezer for longer and is completely frozen, make sure you give it a good amount of time to thaw if you want a cheesecake-like cake. Remove the side from the spring-form pan, slice and serve with a spoonful of strawberry coulis on top!
Store in the fridge or freezer for up to a week, if it lasts that long!
I hope you all enjoyed feasting your eyes on my potluck contribution. Now, do yourself a favour and go and check out all the other recipes that are contributed! For your convenience, we have some handy buttons you can click:
to the recipe before mine at The Veg Bar
to the next lovely dessert recipe at Veggie 4 a Year
Or go to the beginning at Vegan Bloggers Unite and enjoy the entire feast! (Make sure you see all of them no matter what order you follow)
Enjoy the rest of the festivities and have a lovely weekend!