Thursday, August 30, 2012

Peaches N Cream Cake, Viewers Choice Winner, and Summer Fu


Guess what?! I have the results for the winner of the Viewers Choice Award for the Ice Cream Sundae Challenge. But first, a recipe and some pics...

I love ripe peaches in the summer, don't you? I feel the same about any sweet, ripe, juicy fruit!
Ontario peaches keep calling my name during each trip to the grocery store lately... then my creativity gets going. Visions of peach crumble (as I posted recently), peach ice cream (which I got to test for the ice cream challenge), peach smoothies, peach pie, and peach cake danced in my head... I've even thought about dehydrating a bunch for the winter but haven't made it that far yet.


Do you have some peach dessert ideas for me? 

I came up with this peachy cream cake during the past week for the arrival of J's sister and her fiance who visited us for 4 days. The recipe makes a very thick 6" cheesecake or you could make a 7 or 8" cake. It's the perfect way to use up a pile of peaches!


Peaches N Cream Cake 

Crust

2/3 cup blanched almonds
(or regular almonds if you don't mind color in the crust)
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1 tablespoon maple syrup
2 teaspoons melted coconut butter
Pinch of salt

Grind the almonds into flour in a food processor.
Add the remaining ingredients and process into a dough.
Press into the bottom of a 6" spring form pan. Chill in the fridge.

Filling

2 1/2 cups packed, diced peaches (skin on)
1/2 cup irish moss gel (Recipe here)
3/4 cup cashews
1/4 cup agave
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla
2-5 drops stevia
3 drops peach medicine flower essence, optional
1/3 cup melted coconut oil
2 tablespoons melted coconut butter

Blend the peaches, moss gel, cashews, agave, lemon, and vanilla until smooth and creamy.
Add the coconut oil and butter. Blend again.
Add stevia, to taste if you like a bit more sweetener (I used 3 or 4 drops), and peach essence, if using.
Pour the mixture over the crust. Spread evenly.
Chill at least 8 hours in the fridge.


Peach Topping

1 1/2 cups diced peaches
2 medjool dates, chopped fine
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon psyllium

Process ingredients together in a food processor, keeping some texture (which is why you chop the dates first).
Spoon over the chilled cake.


On Saturday it was girl's night/goodbye party for my dear friend Nicole who is moving far away with her new hubby. 10 of us gathered at a restaurant patio for dinner that beautiful evening, followed by dessert and a movie at her place.

I just love this pic. No one was prepared for the picture!

Bye bye Nicoley... I love you and will miss you!

Guess what my dessert contribution was?! Peanut butter blondies with chocolate drizzle - gluten free and vegan.


I did a post about Nicole's wedding back in June. She finally got the photos back from the photographer. Brings back such fun memories!


We rode in a gorgeous boat from the church to the island where the reception was. Champagne and chocolate covered strawberries. Oh yeah!

I love the series of Nicole and Dawson in the forest.

We all had a hoot with this jumping shot! 

Ok! Now onto ice cream sundae stuff. I made a chart on paper and tallied all the votes for the Viewers Choice Award.

Drumroll....

The winner is Karolina's Holy Graal Sundae with 25 votes! Congrats girl, you made a beautiful sundae.

In second place was Angela's Beary Berrilicious Sundae at 19 votes and in third place was Amy's Pretty in Pink Sundae at 17 votes.


I'm still working on testing all the recipes for the overall grand prize, sponsored by Raw Guru. It's a work in progress that I have to wind in and out of my schedule. It's a tasty project!!! What I can say so far is that there's some super creativity out there. Things I wouldn't have dreamed up. Stay tuned for that within the next week.

Shared on Wellness Weekend, Allergy Free Wednesdays, Healthy Vegan Fridays

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Raw Chocolate Decadence Cheesecake


You may remember the raw cheesecake recipe I posted recently, along with a pile of other cheesecakes I've made in the last 5 years of blogging. I made that cheesecake for a client since then and snapped a few pictures to share with you. Heck, I'll repost the recipe too!

This time I topped the cake with my favourite chocolate sauce (from Just Desserts), and coconut crunchies from my Coconut Cardamom Cheesecake.


Raw Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake

Depending on the thickness you desire, you can double or times the recipe by 1.5 which is what I did for this 12" cake. I then sliced it into 16 pieces.

Crust 

1 1/2 cups almonds
2/3 - 3/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1 teaspoon pure vanilla or water

Grind the almonds into a flour in a food processor.
Add the raisins and continue grinding until broken down.
Add the coconut and vanilla. Grind again to incorporate.
Add another 1/2 - 1 teaspoon water if needed to keep the mixture held together when pressed in your hand.
Press evenly into the bottom of a 7 or 8" spring form pan.

Filling

2 cups cashews
2/3 cup maple syrup
3/4 cup water
2/3 cup cacao powder
1 tablespoon pure vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup melted coconut oil
1/4 cup melted coconut butter

Blend the cashews, maple, water, vanilla and salt until smooth and creamy in a high speed blender.
Add the coconut oil and butter. Blend to incorporate. 
Add the cacao powder last and blend again. The mixture is thick.
Pour over the crust and set in the fridge for at least 12 hours or in the freezer for 6 hours and then transfer to the fridge for a few hours. 



Coconut Crunch Topping

This is so yummy and crunchy! It would be a great topping on raw ice cream too!

6 tablespoons shredded coconut
2 teaspoons maple sugar
Pinch salt
2 teaspoons melted coconut butter
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon melted coconut oil

Stir all ingredients together in a bowl. 
Set in the fridge or freezer to firm up, 10-20 minutes. 
Break into pieces using a butter knife. 
Sprinkle over the set cheesecake.

Have I convinced you that you should make this healthy raw chocolate cheesecake to satisfy your sweet tooth?! :)

Here's a sneak peak at my next recipe for ya! 

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Raw Pizza Pizza


Occasionally I have a savory recipe to share and today is the day! It's nothing really new but I enjoyed it last week and snapped a few pics so I could share it with you. I use my favourite buckwheat pizza crust that I've posted about before, topped with basil pesto, sun dried tomato sauce, cashew cheese, cherry tomatoes, spinach, and marinated mushrooms. It's a delicious gourmet raw vegan dinner that's perfect when you want a special meal.


I know the recipe may look daunting, but it's actually very easy to throw together. I recommend making a bunch of dehydrated pizza crusts to keep on hand in the fridge or freezer. They'll easily keep for a few months. When you want pizza you simply need to whip up any toppings of your choice. Sometimes I just top it with cheese, sauce, and veggies if I don't have any pesto already made. The marinated and dehydrated (for a few hours) mushrooms are a treat but not necessary. You can throw sliced mushrooms on top and it will still be tasty.

If you're wanting for that "cooked pizza" look and "warm out of the oven" feel, top the pizza and then dehydrate the whole thing for 2-4 hours.

I've made lots of raw pizza over the years. Get as gourmet or as simple as you like. Here I've topped it with cashew cheese, tomato sauce, red pepper, zucchini, mushrooms, and fresh basil.

Pizza

Buckwheat Crust

This makes a lot of crust. You can spread it into small rounds for individual pizzas, or cover a whole teflex sheet and cut into squares, or make one large round crust as I did for this pizza - but I always do a combination of each. The small crusts are great for freezing. Pull em out when you have a pizza craving and you just need to put some toppings on.

2 cups buckwheat, soaked
1 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup ground yellow flax seed
1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes, soaked
1/4 cup olive oil
3/4 cup tomato soak water
2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup chopped green onion
1 teaspoon himalayan salt
2 teaspoons agave
1Tbs dry or 1/4 cup fresh, packed basil
1 1/2 teaspoons tried oregano

In a food processor, grind the buckwheat, adding 1/4 cup of the 3/4 cup tomato soak water. Transfer to a bowl.
Grind the sunflower seeds. Add to the buckwheat along with the ground flax.
In a blender, combine all remaining ingredients until smooth.
Mix into the buckwheat/sunflower/flax.
Spread the mixture onto teflex sheets, creating rounds or squares. Score.
Dehydrate at 145F for 1 hour. Turn the temperature down to 115F and continue to dehydrate until you can flip the crusts over to the mesh screen. Dehydrate until dry.


Raw Basil Pesto
I love pesto! I make enough in the summer to freeze for the winter. This pesto is great on zucchini noodles too.

3 cups very tightly packed basil
2-3 cloves garlic
1 cup walnuts
1/2 - 2/3 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
2-3 tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
Optional 1/4 cup sunflower seeds

Blend all ingredients together in a food processor. Use the sunflower seeds if you want it to be thicker. 
Thin with olive oil as desired. 

Raw Tomato Sauce

I really like the combo of fresh and dried herbs in this sauce. I think the fresh basil is a "must". You can add green onion for a nice touch too. 

3/4 cup sundried tomatoes, soaked for 4-6 hours and drained
1-2 tomatoes, as needed
Handful fresh basil
1 medjool date, pitted
Salt, dried oregano and basil, to taste
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

Process all ingredients together in a food process until smooth. 

Raw Cashew Cheese

You could use cheddar cheese sauce on the pizza, or this white cashew cheese. 

1 cup cashews
1/4 - 1/3 cup water
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1/4 teaspoon himalayan salt

Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender until smooth.


Marinated Mushrooms

The process of marinating and dehydrating mushrooms may seem simple but it really transforms the mushrooms. Make a double batch and keep them on hand to throw on salad or on top of zucchini noodles and pesto or tomato sauce.

1 package button mushrooms, sliced
tamari or nama shoyu
olive oil

Splash some tamari and olive oil over the mushrooms. Toss to coat lightly.
Let sit for 2-3 hours.
Spread onto a teflex sheet and dehydrate at 115F for about 2 hours.


How do you like your pizza?! 

Also, there's only 3 days left to vote for your favorite ice cream sundae! If you haven't already, hop over and cast your vote. The winner receives a yummy Sweetly Raw prize package!
Part of Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Wellness Weekend, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Allergy Free WEdnesday

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Peach Crumble and Crunchy Cereal


Looking for a yummy raw cereal recipe? Yesterday my Raw Oatmeal Crunch Cereal was featured on Healthy Blender Recipes as part of August's dehydrated recipe roundup. Every day of this month you'll find a different recipe from various chefs, and American residents get the chance to win a 9 tray Excalibur dehydrator. How awesome is that?! I've featured this recipe before on Sweetly Raw but if you haven't seen it I hope you'll check it out. It totally reminds me of crunchy boxed oat cereal that I used to love.


August is the month of delicious, juicy Ontario peaches. Mmm. Don't you love biting into a ripe peach that sends juice down your chin?! Hehe, well maybe you don't mind if you're outside. Anyway, I've been enjoying these sweet gems lately. They're a great snack and I love adding them to my breakfast protein smoothies.


Peaches are a perfect ingredient to turn into crumble too! The other day I whipped up this super easy raw vegan peach crumble for dessert. Leftovers made a tasty and delicious breakfast the next day. I even like this for lunch while sitting outside in the sunshine.


Easy Raw Peach Crumble

I always use this crumble topping. It's my "go to" recipe that I've featured many times on this blog.
If you have it, a scoop of vanilla ice cream elevates this dessert to a new level!

Crumble Topping

1 cup walnuts
1/2 cup pitted, packed dates
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/3 cup ground raw oat groats, or regular oats
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
1-2 teaspoons water

In a food processor, grind all ingredients together into a crumbly, yet moist texture.
If you want the mixture to press together a bit better, add 1-2 teaspoons of water.
Evenly spread the crumble over the filling.

Filling

7 medium peaches, diced (skin on)
2/3 cup diced peach
2 medjool dates, pitted
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla
Dash of cinnamon

Blend the diced peaches, dates, vanilla, and cinnamon in a food processor until smooth.
Transfer to a bowl and fold in the 7 diced peaches.
Spoon into ramekins or bowls, or small pan. Top with crumble.




Onto ice cream sundae talk... the voting is still in process. If you haven't yet voted for your favourite ice cream sundae, there's still time. Vote now! The winner receives a Sweetly Raw prize package.


I'm currently starting to test the recipes for the grand prize. It's a work in progress but I'm having fun tasting (and so far everything tastes so great I know it will be very hard to choose a winner). Not exactly sure when I'll have the final result but will keep you posted. Probably around the same time the viewer voting finishes on August 29th.

I hope you'll try the peach crumble!
Part of Wellness Weekend, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Slightly indulgent Tuesdays

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Blueberry Cardamom Ice Cream and August Fun


I'm sure you've noticed that it's ice cream central around this blog lately. Not only my own recipes throughout the summer but all the delicious looking ones entered for the vegan ice cream sundae challenge! Remember that the voting is happening right now for the Viewers Choice Award. Vote for your fave sundae until August 29th. This weekend I will start testing recipes for the grand prize (super duper package from Raw Guru)!


Here's an ice cream recipe I made recently. It's inspired by the version from my Ice Cream In The Raw eBook, but with a coconut milk base. I admit I like my version in the book better because it's more ice creamy. This recipe is still good though - I'd say it's more on the sherbet side (creamier than sorbet) with the high ratio of blueberries - it's light and refreshing!


It's starting to cool down around here already so Im not sure how much longer it will feel like ice cream season, boo hoo. Another heat wave is supposed to roll through - fingers crossed!


Blueberry Cardamom Ice Cream

1 1/2 cups blueberries
2 cups full fat coconut milk
1/4 cup agave + 1 tablespoon
3-4 teaspoons cardamom powder
1 teaspoon pure vanilla
5 drops stevia
1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum

Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
Chill for a few hours.
Process in an ice cream machine (will be like soft serve).
Freeze for 1-3 hours in a separate container.

On another note, here's some picture of August fun around here!








Wishing you a great weekend!
Part of Wellness Weekend, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Voting Begins for Viewers Choice Sundae!


The vegan ice cream sundae challenge came to an end Monday night, but the fun still continues! Two fantastic prize packages are up for grabs. The grand prize winner will walk away with an incredible basket of goodies from Raw Guru, including the famous Rawtella. That verdict will be a few weeks as I will have to test each and every ice cream recipe!!! Big task but Im up for the job. I have my taste testers already waiting in the wings.

But for now it's time to vote for YOUR favourite ice cream sundae! The winner receives a Sweetly Raw prize package. If you entered the contest, get your friends to head on over here and leave a comment saying they vote for you.

Viewers Choice Prize

3 Sweetly Raw caramel pecan choccie clusters

3 Sweetly Raw cinnamon caramel nut clusters

1 Sweetly Raw jumbo almond butter or peanut butter cup



Voting Rules

1. To vote, simply leave a comment below saying who you vote for - you can only vote once.
2. You must be a registered user to vote, meaning I can somehow link back to you to see that you;re a real person and you're only voting once.
3. Voting runs until August 29th.


Here are all 16 awesome entries (in order received). I hope you'll click over and check them out - maybe you'll even try a few sundae recipes yourself! 

















Please note that voting is now CLOSED. Thanks to everyone who took a moment to vote!

Shared at Slightly Indulgent Tuesday