Friday, August 23, 2013

Almost Raw Mango Cheesecake with Mango Glaze...

A few days ago I really wanted something sweet. I was dying for dessert, but as I mentioned a couple of days ago I’m staying away from sugar until I’m fully recovered. That means no dessert, or at least no traditionally sweetened desserts. I tried for a while to let the craving pass, and when it wouldn’t I started thinking about fruits. Only just sitting down and chomping away on a piece of fruit wasn’t really doing it for me. Then I got thinking about what I was going to do with the batch of home made cream cheese I’d made last week, and then I got thinking about cheesecake. Then I really wanted cheesecake except cheesecake is loaded with sugar. Hm! What to do?

It was then that a vague idea for a raw cheesecake popped into my head. Most raw cheesecakes are not sweetened with sugar, and a lot of them use fruit as a sweetener instead. I could get behind that right? Except I’ve made raw cheesecakes in the past and while I do enjoy them I find they always have a very strong cashew, date, coconut flavor, which is fine if that’s what you want, but it’s not really ‘cheesecake’ you know? I wanted a cake that was creamy, and cheesy, sweet and tangy, and suddenly I started thinking about mango. I mean it’s summer after all - even if it’s getting near the end of summer - and a Mango Cheesecake sounded just about perfect in that moment. Only, I was tired, and drained from being sick and didn’t want to go through the process of having to bake and look after a cheesecake, especially in the middle of an already hot evening.

So I started wondering if I could make a more traditional cheesecake using my homemade cream cheese and frozen mangos - which were the only kind I had - by employing the basic principals of raw cheesecake making. Once I got thinking like that it all kind of came together in a snap. As it turns out you can make a cheesecake in this way, and it tastes awesome. This cheesecake was so sweet, cool and mangoey the perfect treat on a humid summer evening. Yet it was creamy and tangy like a regular cooked cheesecake with not coconut, or nut aftertaste. The only problem with this particular cheesecake is storage. You see since the filling is quite liquidy you can’t store it in the fridge even after it’s been frozen, because it’ll melt and leak. I didn’t have a problem with it melting completely losing it’s shape and reverting back to pre-frozen state but it melted enough. Of course because cheese doesn’t taste great frozen, and you loose that creamy texture if it’s frozen solid leaving it in the freezer isn’t so great either. My recommendation is that this is a cake best eaten right away. Of course if you need to store it I suggest cutting the entire cake into individual slices first, then storing in the freezer. When you want to eat a slice, take it out and let it thaw for 30 minutes so it gets creamy again.

Though that might seem like some unnecessary trouble this cake is so amazing flavor-wise, that it’s really worth it, even if there’s no perfect way to store it. Of course you could always store most of it in the freezer and store individual slices in the fridge in a snap-lock container that way if it melts a little it won’t get all over your fridge. I think next week I’ll experiment and make this a full-on traditional cooked cheesecake, so I’ll let you know how that goes, but for now enjoy!

Mango Cheesecake with Mango Glaze 

Crust -

1 C Pecans
1 C Rolled Oats
½ tsp Ground Cinnamon
4 Medjool Dates Pitted and Soaked
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsp Coconut Oil
Pinch of Sea Salt
5-8 Drops Liquid Stevia

Filling - 

***1 ½ C Cream Cheese preferably homemade
3 C Frozen Mango Chunks Divided
2 Tbsp Lime Juice
Date Soak Water
1/4 tsp Ground Ginger
2 tsp Maca
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
Pinch of sea salt
2 Tbsp Coconut Oil
8-12 Drops Liquid Stevia

Glaze - 

1 C Frozen Mango Chunks
4 Medjool Dates pitted and soaked
5-8 Drops Liquid Stevia

Instructions -

Crust -

Add Pecans and oats to a food processor and process into fine crumbs.

Add in the dates - reserve the soaking water - and coconut oil along with all other ingredients. Process until a smooth dough forms.

Turn out into a spring-form pan and press down evenly spreading the mixture across the bottom of the pan.

Freeze until ready to add the filling.

Filling -

Add 2 C mango chunks along with the date soak water leftover from the crust recipe to a high speed blender. The water should roughly yield between a third and a half cup. Add in the lime juice and vanilla extract and blend on high until completely smooth.

Add the cream cheese to the food processor along with the pureed mango mixture, coconut oil, maca, ginger, sea salt and stevia. Blend until smooth and fully incorporated.

Add in the remaining cup of mango chunks and process. You can process this until very smooth or leave it a little chunkier, it’s up to you.

Pour the filling into the prepared crust and return to the freezer. Freeze for 2-3 hours until solid but still creamy.

Glaze -

Add all ingredients to a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Pour over cheesecake when ready to serve and then serve immediately or freeze for an additional 30 minutes to firm up the glaze a little bit. Enjoy!

*** Note - I used homemade cream cheese that was made with cashews, salt, water, and 2 tbsp of coconut milk yogurt to culture it. The recipe I used was from Miyoko Schinner’s “Artisan Vegan Cheese.” though I think you could use any homemade vegan cream cheese just as long as it’s cultured. You could try making this with store-bought vegan cream cheese but honestly I don’t know how that would alter the taste and texture of this recipe. Store-bought cream cheese is full of preservatives and other ingredients and it may not freeze as well. Since my homemade cream cheese was practically raw I think it might work better then a cooked cream cheese, but feel free to experiment and let me know what you discover.*** 

1 comment:

  1. This looks amazing and soooo good!! Jotted down the ingredients & will try to make it soon! S.T.