Sunday, December 14, 2014

Christmas treats get a VEGAN/Paleo yummy and guilt-free

After finishing a really hard and dedicated fitness and nutrition regime I decided I wasn't going to ruin it over Christmas by allowing excess sugars, flour and unhealthy fats back into my life, so I decided to swap out a few holiday treats for healthier version. I got this idea on Pinterest, and just changed a few ingredients around to get these amazing little vegan cheesecakes that look AND taste scrumptious. Seriously, these are such a hit, and the fact that you can create your own flavors to satisfy those different cravings and family members is a real bonus. My husbands comment was 'why are they so small', meaning he was hoping for a larger portion (awesome!). The lemon zest really gives it a nice zing. The consistency is between a cheesecake and mousse. It is quite light.

For the crust:
-1 cup raw almonds
-1 cup dates (soaked 10min in hot water then drained)
-pinch of sea salt

throw all ingredients into food processor and turn on high until the nuts form a meal and the whole thing starts to form together - if it's too dry, add extra dates of a little water. Press 1 Tbsp into greased muffin tin lined with a strip of parchment (so that you can pull the tabs to remove them later)

For the batter:
-3 cups unsalted cashews, soaked overnight, drained and rinsed
-3/4 cup coconut cream (put a can of full-fat coconut milk into the fridge overnight, open and remove the firm cream - keep the coconut water for another use like a smoothie)
-1/2 cup honey (or maple syrup of vegan)
-1/2 cup melted coconut oil
-juice of one lemon (squeezed)
-zest of one lemon
-pinch of salt

Put all into the food processor (or blender) and blend until smooth. Pour the batter onto each crust. Now the fun begins - select your flavor. You can use raspberries, blueberries, peanut butter or caramel. I tried a little of everything. For caramel, you can make your own or use store bought - add 1 tsp and swirl it through. For peanut butter use natural and add 1 tsp and swirl through gently. For Blueberries I put a few frozen berries into the batter and swirled through. Now put them into the freezer to set (at least one hour). Remove using a butter knife and store in a tupperware in the freezer and use as needed. Can serve frozen OR thawed for 10 min. ENJOY!!
The original recipe/idea was taken from this Pinterest recipe.

Dr. Anna Falkowski HBSc, ND
Naturopathic Doctor, Clinic Director
Twitter: @NaturoDoctor
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