Strawberry Cheesecake Bites

 

Vegan Strawberry Cheesecake

  • 1 Cup Pecans
  • 6 Medjool dates
  • 1/4 Cup Shredded Coconut
  • 1/4 Tsp sea salt
  1. Crust

    1. Remove the pits from the medjool dates and soak them in warm water for 10 minutes. Drain the water from the dates and place in a food processor along with the remaining ingredients. Process until the nuts are crumbled and the crust is sticking together on it’s own.

    2. Press about 1 1/2 tsp of the mixture into the bottom of each mini muffin cup.

    Tip: To remove the cheesecakes easily from the tray, cut 4-inch strips of parchment paper and place those in the bottom of each cup. Press the crust mixture on top of these. Then when the cheesecakes are done setting in the freezer you can pull on the parchment tabs to lift the cheesecakes out.

    Filling

    1. Allow these strawberries to melt at room temperature or heat over low heat in sauce pan for a few minutes until soft. Then blend this in a blender into a smooth purée.

    2. Take a scant Tbsp of the cashew filling and pour on top of the pressed crust. Then take 1/2 tsp of strawberry purée and dollop on top of the cashew filling. Take the end of a toothpick and swirl the two mixtures around to make a fun artsy pattern!

    3. Freeze the cheesecakes for 1-2 hours until solid. Remove them from the mini muffin trays and allow to thaw for 10-15 minutes. before biting into them.

 

I had my first mini strawberry cheesecake while visiting one of the Brigantine NJ restaurants on the beach.

Vegan Apple Pie

Deep-Dish Vegan Apple Pie

Extra-virgin coconut oil is a great substitute for butter in both the pie dough and the apple filling to make this all-American fruit pie vegan-friendly. We use a mix of apples for the filling: The Golden Delicious keep their shape and are a nice contrast to the soft McIntoshes, and the Granny Smiths give a nice tartness.

  • 3 Cups All-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
  • 2 Tbsp vegan granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 dash Fine salt
  • 1 Cup unrefined virgin or extra-virgin coconut oil
  • 8 Tbsp ice water
  • 4 lbs mixed apples (8 or 9), such as Golden Delicious, Granny Smith and McIntosh
  • ⅔ Cup vegan granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling Read more at http://www.foodnetwork.ca/recipe/deep-dish-vegan-apple-pie/19105/#pZ5CTMTPorFYpM9z.99
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 4 Tbsp unrefined virgin or extra-virgin coconut oil
  • 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon or apple-pie spice
  • ¼ tsp fine salt
  • 2 Tbsp unsweetened almond or soy milk
  1. Dough

    1. Put the flour, sugar, vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a food processor, and pulse to combine. Add the coconut oil in small spoonfuls, and pulse until the largest pieces are pea-size. Add 8 tablespoons ice water, and pulse until evenly combined. Squeeze a handful of the dough together; it should just hold its shape. If the mixture is very powdery, pulse in an additional 1 to 2 tablespoons ice water. Divide the dough between 2 large pieces of plastic wrap, pat each into a 1/2-inch thick discs and chill for at least 1 hour up to overnight.

    Filling

    1. Meanwhile, peel and core the apples; cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Toss with the sugar and lemon juice in a large bowl. Melt the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the apples and cook, stirring occasionally, until the firmer apples soften but hold their shape, about 12 minutes. Add the flour, cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon salt, and stir to combine. Remove from the heat, and let cool completely. (The filling can be made up to 2 days ahead; cover and refrigerate.)

    2. To assemble: To make rolling easier, let the dough soften a bitit should be slightly soft when pressedat room temperature (this may take anywhere from 20 to 40 minutes depending on the temperature of your kitchen). Roll 1 disc of dough out into a 13-inch round on a lightly floured surface or between two pieces of floured parchment or wax paper. If the dough gets too warm, refrigerate it to firm it up. Ease the crust into a 9 1/2-inch deep-dish pie pan. Add the cooled filling, mounding it slightly in the center.

    3. Roll out the remaining dough disc into a 12-inch round; place it over the filling, and press the 2 crusts together around the edges. Fold the overhanging dough under itself, and crimp as desired. Brush the top and edges with the almond milk, and sprinkle generously with sugar. Pierce the top with a knife (or make decorative cutouts) a few times to let steam escape. Chill for at least 1 hour.

    4. Position an oven rack in the lowest position in the oven, place a baking sheet on the rack and preheat to 425ºF; preheat for at least 30 minutes. Place the pie on the hot baking sheet, and lower the oven to 375ºF. Bake until the pie is golden and the filling is bubbly, 1 hour to 1 hour 20 minutes, rotating as needed. (Cover the edges with foil if they brown too quickly.) Transfer to a rack, and cool until set, about 3 hours.

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