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Thursday, November 21, 2013

Vegan Gluten-Free Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake with Pecan Crust

I have been going on a pumpkin cooking spree (just been finding the time to upload recipes). This cheesecake recipe was inspired by an amazing tofu cheesecake I had recently. I am still trying to find a way to make the texture perfect (perhaps using vegan cream cheese). Regardless, I am still pretty proud of this deliciousness I have created.

This cheesecake recipe is a simple, healthy, festive dessert option. Perhaps give it a try for that Thanksgiving feast next week!

UPDATE: I made this again for Thanksgiving 2014 and tweaked the recipe a little. I enjoyed it very much this time around.
Vegan Pumpkin Spiced Cheesecake

RECIPE
Crust:
2 c pecans 
1/4 c maple syrup or agave
1/4 c rice flour
1 tbsp water

Filling:
1 pkg tofu(silken or firm),drained
1  15 oz can pumpkin purée
3/4 c + 2 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 c rice flour (dissolved in 1/4 c warm water)
1 1/2 to 2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt


INSTRUCTIONS
Preheat oven at 350 degrees F.

For the crust, blend the pecans until it is a fine powder. Transfer the blended pecans into a bowl and mix with maple syrup/agave, rice flour, and water. Once mixed well, press the crust evenly into a round 9-in baking dish (for a thicker cheesecake use a dish with a smaller diameter). Place the dish in the oven while the filling is being prepared.
Pumpkin Cheesecake before being put into the oven

For the filling, combine all the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Adjust the measurements for the cinnamon and nutmeg to your desire. NOTE: Nutmeg is very strong, so a little goes a long way.

Remove crust from oven, pour the filling in the pan, and smooth it over evenly with the back of a spoon. Place the cheesecake in the oven and bake for 45-60 minutes, until golden. Remove from oven when done and let cool. Enjoy!


TIPS

  • For a frozen treat, place the cheesecake in the freezer and thaw it out before eating.
  • Serve with whipped cream or ice cream.
  • If you would like, add 8 oz vegan cream cheese or cream cheese and an extra 1/2 c pumpkin for a more similar cheesecake texture.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Vegan Stuffed Roasted Acorn Squash

I love roasted squash, especially during the fall season. Aside from the fact that squashes are super healthy, they taste magically delicious. I love coming up with different combinations of filling to stuff squashes with. Here is one I made up with mashed cauliflower (a much healthier version of mashed potato).


RECIPE
2 acorn squash, halved and seeded 
1 head of cauliflower 
2 oz dried cranberries 
1 package tempeh (any type/ flavor), cubed 
1 medium onion, diced 

1 c mushroom, chopped (any variety)Seasoning (garlic powder, thyme, salt, pepper) 

INSTRUCTIONS
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. 

Place the 4 halves of acorn squash on a greased baking sheet and cook for at least 40 minutes (until soft). 

While the acorn squash is roasting, prepare the base of the filling by chopping the cauliflower into small pieces and placing it in a blender. For a rice texture, blend until the cauliflower is in rice sized pieces. For a smoother texture, pureé cauliflower. 

Place a saucepan on medium-high heat. Sauteé onion, mushroom, and tempeh with a little oil and salt. Turn the heat down to medium and add the cauliflower, cranberries, and seasoning. Cook until the cranberries soften. When finished, scoop the filling into the bowls of roasted acorn squash and bake at 400 degrees F for another ten minutes ( until slightly browned). Remove from oven and serve! 

TIPS

  • Feel free to make your own variations to this dish by using brown rice instead of cauliflower, or adding more vegetables to the filling.