I was going to call this a cheesecake …. buuuuuuut I just didn't feel right doing that .. because the truth is , this has NO cheese in it whatsoever. It also has no dairy, no gluten, and no refined sugar either ! I won't sit here and convince you it's just like cheesecake like the rest of the health foodies do (Im also not going to make brownies with zucchini or like … black beans in it and convince you that it's justttttt like regular brownies, either .. #sorrynotsorry). So is it cheesecake ? No... but is it an absolutely freaking delicious dessert that will satisfy your sweet tooth and impress your guests that you should totally make when you have a day off or a special occasion ? You betcha !!
It's the end of fig season and I wanted to pay homage to these short lived wonders with an epic dessert that is both beautiful and tasty. Creating a tasty dessert is usually quite an easy task .. I mean just throw together butter/flour/sugar in some certain ratio and it will pretty much always taste good ! BUTTTTT .. I always have to test myself and redefine what ''health food'' is. So I came up with this HEALTHY dessert and you will absolutely love it. The base is a creamy vanilla bean filling made out of the wonder that is soaked cashews. Instead of being a sugar/dairy laden mixture of empty calories .. it is instead a nutrient dense layer with healthy fats and just a touch of sweetness. The crust resembles a shortbread cookie in both taste and texture It is made with almond flour and some other paleo approved ingredients. The topping … just unadulterated FIGS … with a drizzle of honey to give them some sheen and bring out there inherent sweetness as well as a few pistachios for garnish.
This base is so yummy and it's flavor can really be paired with any fruit you decide. Macerated cherries or strawberries would be incredible on top of this or even some passionfruit ( totally trying that next ! )
Vanilla bean filling -
2 cups raw cashews (soaked overnight)
3 tablespoons raw honey or maple syrup
1/3 cup melted coconut oil or ghee*
Juice of one lemon
1tsp vanilla extract
1tsp vanilla bean powder*
2-3 tablespoons almond milk
1/4 tsp Himalayan pink salt
Paleo pie crust-
1 cup blanched almond flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup arrowroot flour
1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt
1/2 cup COLD grass fed butter , chopped
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tbsp. coconut sugar
Approx 15 Figs
1 tbsp. honey or maple syrup
1/4 cup of pistachios (optional)
1. Prepare the pie crust first. Combine dry ingredients together in a food processor.
2. Add the cold butter and pulse until it has the texture of crumbs.
3. Add in one beaten egg and pulse just until a dough forms.
4. Roll the dough into a ball and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
5. Preheat oven to 400 Degrees
6. Roll out pie shell then press and fit it into your prepared pan ( i used a round pan and lined i with parchment paper for easy transfer later ! If you have a spring form pan that would be great ) Bake shell for approx. 17 min (until shell is nice and golden)
7. Let the shell cool completely before filling it
1. Soak cashews overnight in a bowl of water
2. After cashews are soaked, transfer them to a food processor with all of the filling ingredients and process until it has a creamy thick texture.
3. Pour the cashew mixture into the pan on top of the pastry crust
4. Refrigerate this mixture until it is set (approx. 2 hrs)
5. Carefully remove the combined and set tart out of the pan and transfer it to a plate ( here is where the parchment paper saves your life ! it makes it so easy to just pull out )
5. Slice the figs and arrange on top of the tart however you prefer ! Drizzle a touch of honey or maple syrup to bring out the flavor of the figs and add a sheen to the top. Sprinkle a few pistachios on top for texture.
*It's important to incorporate vanilla bean powder into this recipe ! It gives the tart a unique flavor that extract alone doesn't do. My favorite brand is Terrasoul and you can purchase it here https://www.terrasoul.com/cacao-vanilla/20-vanilla-bean-powder.html or on amazon.
*Make sure the oil is melted while you incorporate it .. it will re-solidify while the mixture sets and create a firm cheesecake like texture.
ENJOY! If you make it let me know what you think and don't forget to follow me on Instagram (@mindfulgourmet) !