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Posts Tagged ‘Carob’

Raw Carob Cheesecake with Almond Crust...

As I may have mentioned before, I always found raw food recipes to be rather intimidating with all the soaking, dehydrating and time consuming preparation, and have therefore hesitated to try my hand at raw desserts…Well, I don’t know what took me so long! The actual assembly of this dessert is simple & fast – all you really need to do is blend the ingredients & pop it in a dish. The only advanced preparation needed is to soak the cashews the night before, and even this isn’t completely necessary,  but I would recommend it as it gives the nuts a creamier texture as well as activating the enzymes in them and making them easier to digest. Coconut Oil can be a bit pricey, but you will need it for this recipe as it is responsible for ‘setting’ the cheesecake (Coconut Oil solidifies in cold temperatures) – it’s also worth investing in to use for baking & cooking, as it is safe to heat to very high temperatures [incidentally, my Indian friends swear by using it on their hair once or twice a month!]. These ‘Cheesecakes’ are so much like the original, in texture and taste, you wouldn’t guess they are raw…Here are two variations for you to try out:

Raw Lemon Cheesecake (modified version of the one found in Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen: Easy, Delectable Living Foods Recipes)

Ingredients:

Crust

1 1/2 cups Nuts (your choice, I used a mixture of Hazelnuts, Walnuts & Cashews) or 1 cup Nut Meal (eg: Almond or Hazelnut)

1/2 tsp. Salt

1/2 cup pitted Dates (soaked in hot water for about 15 mins. to soften)

1/4 cup shredded Coconut

Filling

3 cups raw Cashews (soaked overnight, or atleast 8 hours, in filtered water) and rinsed

3/4 cup fresh Lemon Juice

3/4 cup Agave Syrup (or 1/4 tsp. Stevia powder & 1/3 cup Agave)

3/4 cup Coconut Oil (liquid form)

1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

zest of 1 Lemon (optional)

1/2 cup Water, as needed (use the soaking water from the dates)

 

Method:

– For the crust: Process the nuts into small pieces with the salt in a food processor. Slowly add Dates and mix well, then mix in Coconut. Press ‘dough’ into the bottom of a Cheesecake dish or pan (9-inch), and place in refrigerator until needed.

– For the filling: Blend Cashews, Lemon Juice, Agave (and Stevia, if using), Coconut Oil, and Vanilla (and Lemon Zest, if using), in your blender/food processor. Add just enough Water to blend into a smooth ‘cream’. Pour onto the crust in the dish and place in freezer for about an hour until firm. Then refrigerate until serving. (Keeps for about 5 days, if it lasts that long…)

Raw Carob (or Chocolate) Cheesecake (based on a recipe in Kristen Suzanne’s EASY Raw Vegan Desserts: Delicious & Easy Raw Food Recipes for Cookies, Pies, Cakes, Puddings, Mousses, Cobblers, Candies & Ice Creams)

Ingredients:

Crust

1 cup Almond Meal

dash of Salt

1/2 cup of pitted Dates (soaked for about 15 mins.)

1/4 cup shredded Coconut

Filling

3 cups of raw Cashews, soaked overnight (or atleast a few hours) and rinsed

1/3 cup Agave Syrup

1/4 tsp. Stevia powder or another 1/3 cup Agave

1/2 cup fresh Lemon Juice

1/4 cup Water (use soaking Water from Dates)

1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

3/4 cup Coconut Oil, liquid form

3/4 cup Carob powder, or Chocolate powder

 

Method:

– For the Crust & Filling: Same as with Raw Lemon Cheesecake, but adding Coconut Oil and Carob powder at the end for the filling, after blending the rest of the ingredients.

Raw Lemon Cheesecake...

 

*Keep in mind that this dessert is packed with calories, albeit good ones, so take it easy…(says me, who devoured a whole Cheesecake to myself in a matter of 2 days -whoops!)

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This Mousse has been made with Carob which is a legume similar to the Cacao bean, but it has a sweeter taste and is not as bitter. Carob is also a great substitute for Chocolate when you are avoiding caffeine, as I am, and it only contains 2% fat against Cocoa’s 23%. However, I know that Carob is not as widely available, so you can happily replace it with Cocoa in this recipe and it will still taste delicious. ..And as there is none of the usual cream and milk chocolate in this Mousse, it will still be very low in fat, and therefore a guilt-free indulgence! This is not the most luscious Chocolate Mousse recipe I have (I plan to make that at a later stage…), but it IS really quick & easy to make.

Ingredients: (modified from the Vegan Epicurean site)

1 asceptic box of Firm Silken Tofu

6 Tblsp. Agave (or: 1/4 tsp. Stevia, 1/2 Tblsp. Agave & 4 Tblsp. Soy Milk)

3 1/2 Tblsp. Carob powder/Cocoa powder

pinch of Salt

1 1/2 Tblsp. Kahlua or other Liqueur

1/2 tsp. Vanilla Extract

1/4 cup Carob chips/chocolate chips, melted

Cacoa nibs or Chocolate shavings for sprinkling on top

 

Method:

– Blend all ingredients in a food processor/blender, and combine thoroughly.

– Transfer to small serving bowls and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for atleast 1 hour before serving.

– Sprinkle with Chocolate shavings and dig in!

 

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With the excitement of my Thailand trip coming up, i got into a bit of a coconut frenzy!  The Ice Cream is meant to be Vanilla-Bean flavoured, from the book Lick It! Creamy Dreamy Vegan Ice Creams Your Mouth Will Love, but as the recipe uses Coconut Milk there is a lovely undertone of Coconut that comes through – and it also makes it deliciously creamy! The cluster idea came from a strong craving for my favourite little Carob-coconut bombs that I scoff on when I’m in South Africa. These didn’t come out quite the same, but were tasty none the less. Just be careful not to burn the Carob Chocolate, as it can get a strange flavour & gummy texture. Who would have though Vegan Ice cream could be this decadent?! I will definately be making this recipe regularly…If you don’t have an Ice cream machine, i recommend you invest in one asap – it’s my favourite Kitchen gadget!

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups Soymilk

1 Vanilla Bean

1 can Coconut Milk

1/2 cup Agave Nectar (or Unbleached Sugar)

1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

 

Method:

Cut Vanilla Bean pod in half and scrape seeds into Soymilk, along with the pod. Bring to a boil in saucepan, then reduce heat and simmer 15mins. Remove from heat and let steep for 5 mins.

– Remove vanilla pod, along with any skin that may have formed. Whisk in Coconut Milk, Agave/Sugar, and Extract and place in the fridge in a glass jug/bowl for atleast 8 hours or overnight to chill.

– Pour into Ice cream maker and follow instructions according to your machine. Once frozen, place in freezer to harden up a bit more if desired (depending on your preference of texture).

Coconut-Carob Clusters:

1 cup Carob Chips

1 Tblsp. Soymilk

1 cup Coconut, dessicated

1 Tblsp. Agave/Maple Syrup

 

Method:

Melt Chocolate Chips with Soymilk in a double boiler over hot water, stirring constantly. Do not burn.

– Once melted, fold in Agave & Coconut. Using a Tablespoon scoop mixture into small clusters, and place on a lined tray.

– Freeze for 30 mins. and then place in refrigerator until ready to eat.

Easy Chocolate Sauce:

1/2 cup Cocoa

1/2 cup Maple Syrup

1 – 1 1/2 Tblsp. Soymilk

1/2 tsp. Vanilla Extract

 

– Whisk together. If you like your sauce warm like me, then heat on low.

* How delicious is this Ice cream…?!

 

 

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While my friends where digging into the Almond cupcakes, I was munching on a more innocent option: these can’t really be classified as brownies, as they don’t contain any chocolate and have quite a different texture and taste. However, if that’s what you’re craving but you feel like a healthier option – these are for you. They contain Spelt flour, which is not gluten free, but much easier to digest than wheat flour and most wheat-intolerant people can have it. They are also sugar-free, which is always a plus – using apple juice and bananas instead. The use of carob in place of cocoa makes them caffeine free, and the added oats/raisins/coconut/nuts contribute to their nutritional value as well as giving them a great crunchy/gooey texture. These brownies are dense & rich, without an overpowering sweetness. I would recommend them to people with a taste for more ‘natural’ flavours – I found them quite addictive! My friends opted for the cupcakes…

(Recipe taken from  ‘All-Creatures’ webpage)

Ingredients:

1/2 cup Spelt Flour (or Whole-wheat if you prefer)

1 1/2 cups Rolled Oats, ground in blender

1 cup Raisins

1/2 cup shredded Coconut, unsweetened

1/2 cup chopped Almonds (i mixed with Hazelnuts)

2 Ripe Bananas

1/2 cup Apple Juice (I used Freshly squeezed)

1/2 cup Carob Powder

1/2 Tblsp. Vanilla Extract

1/4 tsp. Cinnamon (optional)

 

Method:

– Preheat Oven to 350 F/175 C, and grease square brownie tin.

– Mix Spelt and Oats in a medium sized bowl until combined. Add Coconut, Nuts and 1/2 cup of Raisins and mix well to make sure Raisins are coated with Flour and not sticking together.

– Place Apple Juice, peeled Bananas, 1/2 cup Raisins, Carob, Vanilla & Cinnamon in Blender and blend on high until thoroughly combined and smooth. Should look like a ‘fudge’ sauce…

– Add liquid mixture to dry mixture in bowl, and combine thoroughly with a spatula. (If dough is too stiff, add a little more Apple Juice/Water – but it should be quite thick.)

– Spread Brownie dough into the pan, and smooth the top with a spatula.

– Bake around 20mins. depending on oven. Brownies should be firm, but not hard – do not overbake.

– Remove from oven, let cool before slicing.

 

* Eat with a guilt-free conscience…

 

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