Raw Vegan = Delicious Decadence

August 4th, 2010 · Lisa · gluten-free, raw, Recipes, sugar-free, Sweet · Comments

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.

1. Apricot Macaroons

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

1 cup cashew flour
1 cup coconut flour
1/3 cup lucuma powder
2 TB apricot puree (about 3 apricots and a TB of water blended)
1 TB carrot juice (optional)*
1/2 tsp vanilla bean powder
pinch of salt

1/2 cup dates
1/2 cup of pitted apricots
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
1/2 tsp vanilla bean powder
pinch of salt
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.
Here is Camille expertly straining the carrot juice from the pulp.
Aren’t they precious?
2. Blueberry Lavender Cheesecake
A simple nut-date crust.

Topped with a luscious layer of blueberries, cashews, lavender, coconut oil and agave.

3. Peach Ginger Icebox Cake

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

Crust: Pulse the almonds and vanilla into small pieces. Then add the agave and process until everything is well combined. Sprinkle half of the mixture into the bottom of a loaf/brownie pan.
Filling: Combine everything, except the peaches and coconut oil, in your blender and blend until smooth. Then add the coconut oil and blend just until emulsified. Pour the mixture into a large bowl and fold in the 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.

4. Mango Pudding from Living Raw Food

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

When you have two batches of mint, there really is no other option.

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?


  1. Posted August 4, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    Wow wow wow! I SO wish i could have been there to join you girls.
    The treats look amazing – i have some ripe mangoes right now, perhaps I'll have to try the pudding.

    Thanks for sharing Lisa!

  2. Posted August 4, 2010 at 10:24 pm

    I love raw cheesecake! YUM!!! In my top favs along with macaroons! 🙂 Everything looks great!

  3. Posted August 4, 2010 at 10:38 pm

    Lovely post! I had so much fun making food with you and Nelly. And I love that you put the mint to such great use… I expected nothing less.

    Unfortunately, most of my goodies are gone now. Mark liked the macaroons too much to keep his hands out of the cookie jar!

  4. Posted August 4, 2010 at 11:02 pm

    girlie…thanks for sharing the day with me…

    so glad you enjoyed the extra goodies i sent you home with…it makes me really happy when people are enthusiastic about the food i send them home with…and it's SO nice to have friends like you, to share it all with. so very blessed to have you in my life…

    thank you for being you.


  5. Posted August 4, 2010 at 11:29 pm

    The blueberry lavender cheesecake looks devine! I've only ever made a raw avocado-lime cheesecake, but I would love to learn how to make the beautiful ones that you create. I think my ideal cake would include chocolate and strawberries.

    You're lucky to have found such amazing people who share the same interests. I would love to join in some day!

  6. Posted August 4, 2010 at 11:35 pm

    This post makes me so hungry 😉 Everything looks and sounds amazing!!! Wish we could have been there to join in on all the fun!!!

  7. Posted August 5, 2010 at 12:20 am

    I'm already converted but I still want a slice.

    What fun to get together to unbake. I love unbaking with others. It all looks so delicious!

    Nelly is the sweetest, yes indeed.

  8. Posted August 5, 2010 at 5:07 am

    My mouth is watering. Everything looks so good!

  9. Posted August 5, 2010 at 10:00 pm

    Heathy, Lauren, Nic, Michelle, Lori and Bitt – We would love to have you all there to join in the next unbaking bash. I'm so happy to have connected with all of you through your amazing blogs (and Nicole in person!).

    Camille and Nelly – you two already know how grateful I am for your friendship. I can't wait for our next adventure (NYC?)

    JL – thanks so much for stopping by. I've been enjoying your posts and tweets so much lately. I hope your weekend was as delicious!

  10. Posted August 6, 2010 at 9:29 am

    I love raw desserts! I need more time in my week to make them. I have one in mind today that I want to make tonight!

    No chance you could post that Mint CHeesecake recipe?

    Nice pictures. I wish I were closer to Toronto, even though I am 3 hours away, so that I could hang out with fun ladies like y'all!

  11. Posted August 6, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    Wow! I can't keep up with all the amazing adventures you are having:)

    'Toronto's Raw Trio' does it again.
    Everything looks incredible, and I really appreciate the link to the new book by Matthew Kenney…I'm going to need a bigger bookshelf:)

  12. Posted August 9, 2010 at 12:53 pm

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE post the Blueberry Lavender Cheesecake recipe, that sounds absolutely amazing!

  13. Posted August 9, 2010 at 9:48 pm

    Noelle – it is Russell James' recipe. I'll send him an email to see if he minds.

    Gerard – Since you asked so nicely, I'll get something up for you very soon.

    Evergreen – I will happily exchange some raw sweets for some of the amazing kombucha you've been brewing. I agree, Matthew Kenney's new book look amazing. I am buying a new bookshelf this week.

  14. Posted August 12, 2010 at 1:06 pm

    Wow…so many yummies! Lovely blog you have! Enjoy!

  15. Posted August 12, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    I just made my first raw vegan cheesecake this week =) They are love at first bite! All those treats look wonderful, I hope I meet folks that I can get together and unbake with someday =)

  16. Posted August 13, 2010 at 11:46 am

    Hi Pam and tyrah,
    I know, it is a pretty serious assortment of sweets. We would love to have you join us in more unbaking in the future. It is good to spread the raw desserts around.


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