As you read in my last post, I spent Saturday in the company of Camille, Nelly and Marlie (and an entertaining peanut gallery – thanks to Dan and Mark). Although that was four days ago, I will probably be enjoying the dessert bounty for months to come. I’m really excited to show you everything we created and share a few of the recipe variations we invented.
We planned the menu by wandering around the farmers market and picking up some local delights: blueberries, peaches, mangoes and apricots. Then we flipped through our favourite books and discussed current sources of online inspiration. In the end we landed on a menu of four special treats.
We had all seen the preview of Matthew Kenney’s upcoming release Everyday Raw Desserts with three versions of the beautiful French confection: macaroons. Who hasn’t walked past a bakery window in awe of these brightly coloured favours? We decided to work with the raspberry recipe to create an apricot variation.
Toronto’s Raw Trio’s Apricot Macaroons (to make 12)
1 cup cashew flour
In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients then stir in the liquid. You want a light dough consistency that holds together enough to form into balls. Use a small ice cream scoop or 2 TB measure to portion out each cookie onto a Teflex-lined dehydrator tray. Create small circular mounds flattened slightly with your palm. Dehydrate the macaroons at 110 degrees for 4-6 hours. The outside should be crispy but the inside should remain chewy.
*We added this in an attempt to brighten the orange colour. It wasn’t very affective.
Blend all the ingredients together in a high-powered blender until smooth.
Allow the cookies to cool before trying to add the filling. A piping bag will really help to portion out the filling on each cookie. We used a plastic bag with one corner cut off. Top half of the cookies with the filling and then gently pres the other half on top to create the perfect French macaroon.
Topped with a luscious layer of blueberries, cashews, lavender, coconut oil and agave.
We decided to adapt Ani’s adored Pineapple Icebox cake recipe to celebrate the current availability of local stone-fruit. We came up with this plan at the end of a day of creation so we had to make a few interesting choices with the ingredients. I’m sure you’d be successful with Ani’s recipe and a simple switch of the fruit. We were a little more innovative and the results were pretty fantastic.
1 1/2 cups almonds
1/2 tsp vanilla bean powder
2 TB agave syrup
3/4 cup cashew butter
1/4 cup brazil nuts
1/3 cup agave syrup
1 frozen banana
2 TB grated ginger
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
2 1/2 cup peeled and chopped peaches
Assembly: Pour the filling onto the bottom crust. Sprinkle the top with the remaining crust mixture. Freeze the cake overnight or until it is firm enough to slice.
We used the Pakistani Mango which imparts an incredible, complex sweetness. It really is an amazing addition to this simple dessert. The Irish Moss makes the texture very light and fluffy.
As we were packing up our treats, Nelly continued to demonstrate her amazing generosity. She sent me home with some of her homemade granola, moon pies and a slice of the beautiful cheesecake she had made with Camille. When I got home I sat for a minute just soaking up the warm feelings that were overwhelming my heart. What a treat to find friends who share your interests and treat you with such enthusiastic love.
The next morning I stretched out the lovefest with a bowl of Nelly’s Coconut Vanilla Granola (from Heathy’s recipe) on top of leftover blueberries, banana and apricots.
Even after all that fun, I couldn’t resist making Russell James’ Chocolate Mint Cheesecake
I hope this post will inspire you to find ways to share your passions with the people you care about. There is nothing more inspiring then watching people exploring the things in life that bring them joy.
I look forward to putting these treats to work as the most effective vegan outreach tool ever invented. I have yet to meet someone who doesn’t swoon at the first bite of a raw vegan cheesecake. If you’re interested in being converted…give me a call 😉
Have you tried a raw cheesecake? What did you think?
What would your ideal raw cheesecake flavour be?