Salute to France Cheesecake
One of my favourite countries is France. From my time living there as a young girl to travels on a regular basis, the country is one of physical beauty, great people and the food culture is unique. For the celebration of Bastille Day, this interpretation of the French flag is a salute to France using fresh fruits as the colours. Great natural flavours and a recognition of the role that produce plays in all foods, French. This cheesecake is the culmination of work on plant-based options that do not compromise on creamy texture and flavour. Using coconut yoghurt, seed and plant-based cream cheeses and soft tofu, this one hits the mark in every way. The saturated fats are 75% lower than traditional cheesecake along with a calorie reduction of 25% and also fiber rich with 15% lower in net carbs.
Yield: 1 cake, 8 slices
Total Time: 3 hours to 24 hours
Equipment: 8” (20.3cm) springform pan, parchment paper, food processor or blender, silicone spatula, shower cap or plastic wrap, dull knife, medium mixing bowl
¼ cup unsweetened almond butter or sunflower seed butter (56 grams)
7/8 cup dates, diced (155 grams)
2 -4 tablespoons water (30-60ml)
1 cup super fine almond flour (115 grams)
Preheat oven to 350F (178C)
Mix dates and water in a medium sized bowl and microwave for 30 seconds. Mix the dates until soft and you are able to incorporate them fully. If the dates are somewhat dry, then add 2 more tablespoons of water and microwave for 30 more seconds. Add the nut or seed butter and almond flour and mix well until you have a paste. Put parchment paper the bottom of the springform pan and use a piece large enough to lap over the outside edges when you press the spring in place. This allows easy release later. Press the mixture press flat and even across the bottom. Bake for 12-15 minutes until brown and firm but not burned. Set aside.
½ cup + 1 tablespoon unsweetened plant-based yoghurt (i.e. coconut or almond) (150 grams)
One package soft tofu (non GMO) (~300 grams)
3- 8-ounce packages grams plant-based cream cheese (low oil, sugar free and sodium) (681 grams)
3 teaspoons vanilla extract (13 ml)
3/8 teaspoon or 4 scoops pure monkfruit (or ½ cup sugar (104 grams))
Mix all filling ingredients in the food processor. Puree for 2-3 minutes until completely smooth. Pour mixture into the springform pan with the previously baked crust. Smooth top with a spatula. Bake for 30-35 minutes. It should be firm on the edges but still slightly jiggly in the centre. Do not overbake. Let cool on counter on hot pad for 1-2 hours. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours until completely cool. Use plastic wrap or shower cap to cover cake in refrigerator to prevent drying out. Use a wet dull knife and loosen the edge of the cake before loosening the springform pan.
1 apple cored and diced (100 grams)
1 pear cored and diced (178 grams)
½ + pint of blueberries (170 grams)
Heaping ½ cup (15+ cherries) pitted and cut in half (125 grams)
~½ lemon squeezed (25 ml)
2 cups water (474 ml)
Place diced apples and pears into a bowl with lemon water until ready for use. This prevents browning. If your cake has cracked on top, use a spatula to fill in the cracks with either cream cheese or yoghurt. Place decorative fruit on top in desired design. Cut and serve.