Pumpkin cheesecake with oranges and winter spices

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Deliciously creamy and moist, this vegan pumpkin cheesecake is infused with fantastic fresh aromas of oranges and a mix of winter spices such as cinnamon, clove, anise, cardamom and nutmeg. Layers of walnut base, sweet cream and tender pumpkin, all add not only to the taste but also to its looks, making this cake a great choice for any festive occasion.

One of the yummiest ways to prepare and eat the pumpkin is certainly in sweets and cakes. Mild pumpkin allows playing with so many different aromas to accommodate to any taste. Besides, it’s low in calories and rich with good nutrients which makes plant based pumpkin sweets a healthier, lighter and equally delicious choice when it comes to sweet treats.

But let’s talk about failures for a second. The first time I made it, it looked great in a cake tin, until I realized the texture was too soft to be cut in nice, neat pieces. If you are, like me, experimenting with plant based, raw or semi-raw sweets, situations like that can happen, simply because of the texture of natural, plant based ingredients that act as a substitute for eggs or butter that act as binders in the traditional sweets. So while we don’t need to think much about it in following a traditional cakes recipes, for the plant based ones it’s really important to mind the texture of each of the ingredients for the good final result. This one here for example, takes a coconut cream to make and as with all things coconut, the coconut cream easily switch from runny to solid depending on a temperature. So for a cake like this to be firm enough it’s vital to use the coconut cream in its solid form. Another thing is the pumpkin itself. There are so many different sorts of pumpkins and squash that taste delicious, but again, if you are looking for a good, solid texture, choose the pumpkin sort that is really dry and sweet. Such pumpkin won’t release much if any liquid while baking which is exactly what you are looking for when it comes to this cake.

Although it was delicious, you can clearly see the excess moist that made the first attempt of my pumpkin cake too soft and soggy to be nicely cut out in pieces.

But a a great thing about the plant based cakes is that regardless of the texture, you will enjoy the taste and it won’t go to waste for sure, as all of the ingredients are perfectly yummy on their own. Another thing is, cakes like these will last much longer in your fridge than the traditional ones since there’s no stuff in them that can go bad quickly like dairy or eggs. So unleash your creative spirit, have fun playing in your kitchen with the plant based treats and just know, that whatever the result you’ll enjoy it. So, let’s move to the recipe for this little beauty.

Ingredients for a 26-28cm cake tin

  • 350g walnuts
  • 20 fresh pitted dates
  • 150g raw cashews soaked in water overnight or boiled for 10 minutes
  • 400ml coconut cream, solid so keep it in a fridge before using
  • 400g baked pumpkin of dry and sweet sort
  • fresh juice of 1 lime
  • 4 mid size oranges
  • 1-2 tsp of mixed spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, cardamom, clove – best if you ground them in mortar and pestle just before
  • 2tsp vanilla extract
  • 4tbsp agave syrup

Let’s make the cake!

  • Blend walnuts and dates together in a processor and simply coat the base and the sides of your cake tin to make the base for the cake. This layer should be about   1 cm thin or less with the edges that go about 5cm in height. Once you coat the cake dish, leave it in a fridge to set until you prepare the rest of the cake.
  • Now blend the cashews and solid coconut cream. Add vanilla and agave syrup and blend it all well into a smooth paste. Take out half of the paste and leave on the side. Add a fresh lime juice to the remaining half and once blended in, pour the white creamy layer on top of the cake base, then return it to the fridge.
  • For the pumpkin layer, blend the other half of the white cashew and coconut cream with the pumpkin. Add the mix of spices and a zest of the oranges. Add this layer on top to finish your cake and leave it in the fridge for at least one hour to fully set.
  • During that time if you wish you can prepare some caramelized oranges to decorate the cake: cut two oranges into thin slices, then cut the slices in halves. On a medium heat melt 100g of coconut sugar. Once the sugar starts to caramelize pop in the orange slices and cook for a minute until coated in caramel, then arrange on top of the cake.

And that’s it. You’re done. Hope you enjoy this cake as much as we all did.

Until the next recipe, stay healthy and stay happy my friends!

 

 

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