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Feb 12, 2013

Berry Chocolate Cheesecake Squares

I will keep this simple. These berry chocolate cheesecake squares are delicious, easy to make, and relatively speaking, good for you. They are vegan, so no heavy cheese or cream, gluten-free, and soy-free. They are full of anthocyanins from the blackberries I use (flavanoids that protect our cells from damage), healthy fats from the nuts (cashews, walnuts, and almonds), and healthy antioxidants from the chocolate. No sugar is used, only Medjool dates and agave. If you make these for your sweetheart for Valentine's day, know you are doing them a favor by nourishing them with healthy plant-based nutrients like these. Think of it as a present for their true heart...the one that benefits most from such yumminess.

the crust:

3/4 cup raw almonds

3/4 cup raw walnuts

1/2 cup pitted Medjool dates, coarsely chopped

1 Tbsp agave or maple syrup

1 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp cinnamon

the filling:

1 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight in water

1/4 tsp sea salt

1/4 cup agave or maple syrup

1 Tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup melted coconut oil

1/2 cup berries of choice (blackberries, blueberries, strawberries)

the chocolate:

3/4 cup dark chocolate chips

1/8 cup almond milk

1. Begin by making the crust. In a food processor, process the walnuts,  almonds, sea salt, and cinnamon until a fine crumb is achieved. Add the pitted, coarsely chopped dates and process again until it comes together and becomes sticky. If you pinch the mixture it should hold together.

2. Place parchment paper or plastic wrap into a 8"x 8" square baking dish, letting it hang over the sides a few inches so you can lift it out later. Press nut mixture into the bottom in an even layer. Put it the freezer to chill.

3. Make the chocolate and the filling. Put chocolate chips in a small heat safe bowl. In a small saucepan heat almond milk and pour over chocolate, stirring to melt. Will take 30 seconds to 1 minute. Set aside.  In a blender, put all filling ingredients. Blend 1-3 minutes until completely creamy, scraping down the sides as needed. Add a little water if needed to make it totally smooth.

4. Pour filling on top of nut mixture, and spread chocolate on top of that. Cover whole dish in plastic wrap and place in the freezer for at least one hour, but up to overnight. To serve, remove from freezer and lift the entire dessert out onto a cutting board. Remove parchment/plastic wrap from the bottom and cut into cubes. Let warm a little bit at room temperature and serve to your loved one!


CommentsTags vegan gluten-free gluten free soy-free chocolate cheesecake cheesecake squares berry healthy raw dessert sweet nuts Valentine's day

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